-------Original Message-------
 
Date: 01/26/05 20:42:14
Subject: [CASonline] As such .......
 
 
 
 
 
 From Davin:
 
 
 The Story Of The Weaver-Girl
 
   While residing at the monastery near Aggavala shrine in the country of Alavi, the Buddha uttered Verse (174) of this book, with reference to a young maiden, who was a weaver.

At the conclusion of an alms-giving ceremony in Alavi, the Buddha gave a discourse on the impermanence of the aggregates (khandhas). The main points the Buddha stressed on that day may be expressed as follows:

"My life is impermanent; for me, death only is permanent. I must certainly die; my life ends in death. Life is not permanent; death is permanent."

The Buddha also exhorted the audience to be always mindful and to strive to perceive the true nature of the aggregate He also said, "As one who is armed with a stick or a spear is prepared to meet an enemy (e.g.. a poisonous snake), so also, one who is ever mindful of death will face death mindfully. He would then leave this world for a good destination (sugati)." Many people did not take the above exhortation seriously, but a young girl of sixteen who was a weaver clearly understood the message. After giving the discourse, the Buddha returned to the Jetavana monastery.

After a lapse of three years, when the Buddha surveyed the world, he saw the young weaver in his vision, and knew that time was ripe for the girl to attain Sotapatti Fruition. So the Buddha came to the country of Alavi to expound the dhamma for the second time. When the girl heard that the Buddha had come again with five hundred bhikkhus, she wanted to go and listen to the discourse which would be given by the Buddha. However, her father had also asked her to wind some thread spools which he needed urgently, so she promptly wound some spools and took them to her father. On the way to her father, she stopped for a moment at the outer fringe of the audience, who had come to listen to the Buddha.

Meanwhile, the Buddha knew that the young weaver would come to listen to his discourse; he also knew that the girl would die when she got to the weaving shed. Therefore, it was very important that she should listen to the Dhamma on her way to the weaving shed and not on her return. So, when the young weaver appeared on the fringe of the audience, the Buddha looked at her. When she saw him looking at her, she dropped her basket and respectfully approached the Buddha. Then, he put four questions to her and she answered all of them. The questions and answers are as given below.

Question (1). Where have you come from?
Answer (1). I do not know.

Question (2). Where are you going?
Answer (2). I do not know.

Question (3). Don't you know?
Answer (3). Yes, I do know.

Question (4). Do you know?
Answer (4). I do not know, Venerable Sir.

Hearing her answers, the audience thought that the young weaver was being very disrespectful. Then, the Buddha asked her to explain what she meant by her answers, and she explained.

"Venerable Sir! Since you know that I have come from my house, I interpreted that, by your first question, you meant to ask me from what past existence I have come here. Hence my answer, 'I do not know.' The second question means, to what future existence I would be going from here; hence my answer, 'I do not know.' The third question means whether I do not know that I would die one day; hence my answer, ayes, I do know.' The last question means whether I know when I would die; hence my answer, 'I do not know.

The Buddha was satisfied with her explanation and he said to the audience, "Most of you might not understand clearly the meaning of the answers given by the young weaver. Those who are ignorant are in darkness, they are just like the blind."

The Buddha then spoke in verse as follows:
Verse 174. Blind are the people of this world: only a few in this world see clearly (with Insight). Just as only a few birds escape from the net, so also, only a few get to the world of the devas, (and Nibbana).
At the end of the discourse, the young weaver attained Sotapatti Fruition.

Then, she continued on her way to the weaving shed. When she got there, her father was asleep on the weaver's seat. As he woke up suddenly, he accidentally pulled the shuttle, and the point of the shuttle struck the girl at her breast. She died on the spot, and her father was broken-hearted. With eyes full of tears he went to the Buddha and asked the Buddha to admit him to the Order of the bhikkhus. So, he became a bhikkhu, and not long afterwards, attained arahatship.

The Dhammapada Stories, translated By Daw Mya Tin, M.A., Burma Pitaka Association, 1986
 
 
For Gautama, in whose embrace, Dharma was shown, and opinions vanished.
For all sentient beings, with whom we are inextricably linked to, over time and over space.
 
__________________________________________________________________________________________________
 

Tzu Chi to build 3,000 houses in Sri Lanka

Kuala Lumpur - Buddhist's Tzu Chi Foundation has pledged to build 3,000 houses for tsunami victims in Hambantota, Sri Lanka.

Buddhist Tzu Chi Merit Society Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur Liaison Centre) chief executive officer Echo Chien said the Sri Lankan Government had given the foundation a 100-acre piece of land for the purpose.


The Tzu Chi volunteers on arrival at KLIA after their voluntary stint in Hambantota, Sri Lanka.

"The foundation initially pledged to build 1,000 houses. However, Sri Lankan Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapakse, during a meeting with our team on Tuesday requested that we help build more houses," she said.

Chien was speaking to reporters at the KL International Airport after receiving the news from Tzu Chi??s 21-member team who returned to Malaysia on Wednesday after helping tsunami victims in Hambantota.

She said the initial plan to build 1,000 houses would cost about RM30mil and the amount had not included the plan for schools, community centres, health clinics, parks and playgrounds.

???The foundation is in favour of a community-based housing project for the people instead of building tents or makeshift structures.

"We sent a medical aid and relief team to help first to gather essential information on how to help. Only then we can distribute aid that is most needed before contributing long-term assistance like rebuilding," she said.

Nephrologist Dr Wee Tuan Hong, one of 40 Tzu Chi volunteers to Sri Lanka, said he was grateful to Tzu Chi for giving him the chance to serve and he was humbled by the experience.

He said the Tzu Chi??s team had treated about 4,000 people in Sri Lanka.

Physician Dr Siva Lingam, a volunteer for Tzu Chi??s free clinic in Klang, said they initially expected to treat the injured but sadly, many either drowned or could not swim due to their severe injuries.

Dentist Dr Chong Fat Full, who closed his clinic in Tangkak, Johor, to join the week-long mission, said he knew of one patient who lost 50 family members and it was this kind of trauma that pained the hearts of many.

Restaurant owner Charlie Kam said it was hard initially to leave his business but he made some arrangements and decided to join the team and cook for them.

He said serving humanity was far more important than earning more profit.

The volunteers each forked out between RM3,000 and RM4,000 for the trip. [AT METRO KL]

______________________________________________________________________________________________________

From Kim....

on behalf of Khenpo Rangdol - Principal of the main Drikung Kagyu Institue in-exile:

 

Dear BB,
Forward to you the appeal message from Khenpo Rangdol.
With the concurrence of Holiness Chetsang Rinpoche, Khenpo and staff of Drikung Institute ,are appealing for much needed donations ,
urgently reguired for the furnishing of the new Drikung Kagyu College.
After 3 years  or so, the new building is near completion to cope with the increase numberof monks.
However funds have fast ''dried-up'', with the interior eg. classrooms,dining hall, office .and the adjoining temple, left with no expenses for  the     furniture.
Khenpo gave the breakdown of donations needed in Rupees.
Item 3) amounts to 170,000 Rupees..
So far they have no dining room  in the old Institute..
The current DINING HALL is to accomodate 200 monks.
..hence it costs so much 170000rupees.
It works out   to be  6800SING$ BASE ON CURRENT EXCHANGE.
TOTAL COST- AMOUNT TO 14,400$   for all furniture needed  for the 4  rooms.
BB, please diseminate this info and appeal to all .
I am aware  many people plus your committee had dug deep into the pockets
for the TSUNAMI RELIEF FUND..
However i hope some kind souls wll give to this worthy cause.
Thank you,
Tasidelek,
kim/aka karma chodron.
 
Dear in Dharma Konchok Karma chodron
          Here I am sending this mail officially behalf of our staff. They are very happy and very thankful to you if you could fund rise for below things what we require very urgently. As we talked yesterday about our new Kagyu college lack of furniture.
    Here I am sending approximately costs for that.
1)     For eight halls room furniture cost Rs.70000/-
2)     For dining hall furniture chairs and tables cost Rs.170000/-
3)     For temple floor mats cost for monks Rs.70000/-
4)     For office furniture cost Rs.50000/- 


Hope soon hearing from you.

With many greetings.
Khenpo Rangdol

 ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 
[SUNDAY WITH AJAHN BRAHMAVAMSO]
Flowers also die
By Wong Kim Hoh
 
If you look at the fine print or the warranty on your birth contract, it will read: 'You can die in a tsunami, an earthquake, from cancer and all sorts of things.'

 

Singapore - Ajahn Brahmavamso is in the lift at the Singapore Buddhist Lodge just off River Valley Road. 'Press the N button, please,' the 53-year-old says with a very British accent. 'It'll take you to Nirvana.'

The occupants of the lift laugh. And Ajahn Brahm, as he is better known, breaks into a beatific smile.

The Caucasian clad in the seasoned saffron robes of a Buddhist monk was born Peter Betts in London in 1951. His late father worked in Britain's merchant navy and his mother was a secretary. He has an elder brother.

This Cambridge University alumnus has a master's in theoretical physics. He dug Jimi Hendrix and, as a child, harboured grand ambitions of becoming a train driver.

At 23, however, he was ordained a Buddhist monk and spent nine years in a forest monastery in north-eastern Thailand studying under Ajahn Chah, a renowned Thai meditation master.

As to what led him to the path less trodden, he recalls: 'In secondary school, I won a book prize for maths. My teacher told me to go to Foyles bookshop in London and pick a maths book.

'But I wasn't going to waste my first prize on a boring maths book, so I got one on all the major religions instead.'

Throughout this interview in the audio-visual room of the Singapore Buddhist Lodge, he sits legs crossed in the lotus position.

He adds: 'I wanted to choose a religion, but also wanted to be rational about it. I thought I should find out what each one teaches and then make my choice. Buddhism stood out. From that time on, I started calling myself a Buddhist.'

He was 16 then and led the life of a normal British teenager.

'I had girlfriends, drank alcohol, had sex and was very much into Jimi Hendrix.'

But at 23, after a couple of failed relationships, he decided to become a novice monk in Thailand.

'It was a beautiful time. I had a stable career and no obligations. If I wanted to become a monk for a short time to give my life some spiritual foundation, I thought this was the time to do it.'

Giving up drink and sex was not difficult, he says.

'It was good. You have a fair amount of experience in that area, so you know what you have given up.'

Life in the Thai forest monastery was very austere. 'The food was disgusting. You ate insects, ants, lizards and anything that crawled.'

However, he stayed because Ajahn Chah, his teacher, was very inspiring. The latter has since died.

'At Cambridge, I'd met rich people, people who have won Nobel Prizes, but this monk was by far the happiest and wisest person I'd seen. You just wanted to stay with him.'

And stay with him Ajahn Brahm did - for nine years.

In the early 1980s, he was invited to start a Buddhist monastery just outside Perth, Australia. He is now its abbot, and in October last year, was awarded the John Curtin Medal by Curtin University of Technology, for building a strong Buddhist community in Australia.

His proudest achievement took place on a Sunday two or three years ago in an Anglican cathedral in Perth.

'For the first time in the history of Christianity, a Buddhist monk gave a sermon and performed the Eucharist in a church on a Sunday, and that was me.'

Ajahn Brahm had become firm friends with the dean of the cathedral who invited him to talk. When word of that leaked, the dean received death threats. Countless letters debating the issue were printed in newspapers.

'In the end, it happened. People packed the hall and crowded around the windows. Half of them were Buddhist, half of them Christian, but no one knew who was what.'

He spoke on 'harmony and peace and love at the heart of all religions'.

'After giving that speech, we put our arms around each other and walked down the hall. The audience gave us a standing ovation for a long time,' he says, visibly moved by the recollection.

The abbot derives a lot of pleasure from talking about Buddhism to schoolchildren and prison inmates in Australia.

'It is perhaps a strange thing but in prison, people are honest. They'd tell me if they thought what I was saying is bulls***.'

One, he recalls, even taught him a lesson on the law of karma.

'This man's been in and out of jail for petty crimes. He said he never robbed people, only houses, because he said houses don't feel pain.'

One day the prisoner told Ajahn Brahm he was put in jail for something he didn't do.

'I told him I'd help him, but he smiled and said: 'But there have been many crimes I have committed for which I've not been caught. So this is fair.' '

Is it fair then that the tsunami happened and so many lives were lost? He relates an incident involving his teacher.

'A soldier came to Ajahn Chah and complained that he had been shot. My master asked: 'What do you mean? That's what happens to soldiers. You shoot people and people shoot you. It's part of the contract.' '

And that, he says, is the lot of humanity. 'If you look at the fine print or the warranty on your birth contract, it will read: 'You can die in a tsunami, an earthquake, from cancer and all sorts of things.'

'The strange thing is, most of us don't expect these things to happen to us. When we have accidents, we ask: 'Why me?' But these are the rules of life.'

Life, he says, is 'like a flower. It blooms for a few days before the petals fall to the ground. But you should not despair because it fertilises the ground for the next flower'. [SUNDAY TIMES, SINGAPORE]

Send your comments to stlife@sph.com.sg

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Attempts to spread Christianity in Sri Lanka decried
By David Rohde
 
Moraketiya, Sri Lanka - A dozen Americans walked into a relief camp here, showering bereft parents and traumatized children with gifts, attention and affection. They also quietly offered camp residents something else: Jesus.

The Americans, all of them from one church in Texas, have staged plays detailing the life of Jesus and had children draw pictures of him, camp residents said. They have told parents who lost children they should still believe in God and held group prayers in which they tried to heal a partly paralyzed man and a deaf 12-year-old girl.

The attempts at proselytizing are angering local Christian leaders, who worry that they could provoke a violent backlash against Christians in Sri Lanka, a predominantly Buddhist country that already is a religious tinderbox.

Last year, Buddhist hard-liners attacked more than 100 churches and the offices of the World Vision Christian aid group, accusing them of using money and social programs to coerce conversions.

Most American aid groups, including those affiliated with religious organizations, strictly avoid mixing aid with missionary work. But scattered reports of proselytizing in Sri Lanka; Indonesia, which is predominantly Muslim; and India, with large Hindu and Muslim populations, are arousing concerns that the goodwill spread by the American relief efforts could be undermined by resentment about missionary work.

The Americans in Sri Lanka belong to the Antioch Community Church, an evangelical congregation based in Waco, Texas. The church is one of a growing number of evangelical groups that believe in mixing humanitarian aid with discussions of religion, an approach more established Christian aid groups such as Catholic Relief Services call unethical.

Sri Lankan refugees, camp administrators and church officials said the Americans have identified themselves only as a humanitarian aid group. In an interview Wednesday, Pat Murphy, 49, a leader of the team, said the group is nongovernmental organization and not a church group.

"It's an NGO," Murphy said. "Just your plain vanilla NGO that does aid work."

But the church's Web site says the Americans are one of four teams dispatched to Sri Lanka and Indonesia who have persuaded dozens of people to "come to Christ." [NEW YORK TIMES]

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

*w*s*d*p

weekly personal and spiritual development activities supporting young adults

organized by the Youth Ministry at Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery.

FEBRUARY 2005

03 Thur                                                    

Bask In The ???Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind??

Movie Screening cum Dharma Discussion with Shen Shian

"ESSM" scored 2005 Golden Globe nominations for Best Picture, Best Actor (Jim Carrey), Best Actress (Kate Winslet) and Best Screenplay (Charlie Kaufman). Come watch this comical and poignant look at breakups, breakdowns and breakthroughs. Joel is stunned to discover that his girlfriend has had their tumultuous relationship erased from her mind. Out of desperation, he does the same. But as memories of her begin to fade, he suddenly realizes how much he still loves her, as he runs and hides with her in his own mind. Kirsten Dunst, Mark Ruffalo and Elijah Wood co-star in this memorable film that is a smart and seriously funny comedy. There will be a discussion after the screening. Visit too, it??s entertaining website: www.eternalsunshine.com

 

10 Thur

Wishing Everyone A Joyous Chinese New Year & Public Holiday!

 May All Be Well & Happy!

 

17 Thur

Spiritual Awakening ??C Perspectives and Insights

Talk cum Q&A session with Jiro Goh & Tan Hwee San        

 

Are you awakened? Are you merely living in a vegetable state of consciousness, which is preoccupied with survival; or at the animal level that is concerned with ambition? What is the purpose & effect of awakening? Does it lead to service? What is the path of service? There are so many things human beings can do and contribute, but what is the basis of this contribution & what is our true nature? Come and have a session with Jiro & Hwee San as they discuss and exchange their views & perspectives on spiritual awakening.

  

20 Sun

Cultural Tour ??C An Invitation To Shuang Lin Monastery & The Development Of Buddhism

Walking Tour Conducted By Cultural Compass

 

Is Buddhism a "Religion" or "Philosophy"? Join us on a tour on Buddhism and its influence on societies and individuals at the Shuang Lin Monastery where we will trace the development of Buddhism as it spreads from South Asia into East Asia and the cross fertilization of ideas in the process. During the tour, we will identify the various Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, what they represent and how to appreciate Buddhist art and the significance of rituals. Great for oriental art lovers and antique collectors! The tour is conducted in simple language and an easy to understand manner. No prior knowledge is required but remember to bring your camera!

Time: 3pm to 4pm                  |           Fee: Free

Meeting Point: Shan Men (The first gate of monastery complex)

*Limited Places Available. Please register now!

 

24 Thur

The Foundation of Excellent Qualities

Sharing cum Q&A Session with Tan Boon Beng, President of Charitable Assistance Society

 

???The Foundation of Excellent Qualities?? by Tsong Khapa, one of the central figures of Tibet, is a representative text in Tibetan Buddhism. The text will be an essential manual for a focal observation & authentic comprehension on complex teachings encapsulated in the tradition. The sharing will be followed by a "no-bars-hold" Question and Dialogue session.

  

 

Venue  

All sessions except for 20 Feb, are at Awareness Place [Well Being] Level 3, #03-39

Blk 231 Bain Street, Bras Basah Complex (Near City Hall & Bugis MRT stations)

 

*Venue for 20 Feb, Cultural Tour is at Lian Shan Shuang Lin Monastery, 184 Jalan Toa Payoh

  

Time           

 

7.30pm ??C 9.30pm

 

Register

 

Email  wsdp@kmspks.org or tel  (65) 6849 5346 or (65) 9387 0252 (Qisen)

 

 

About the Speakers / Facilitators

  

Shen Shian is the Founder and Editor of www.TheDailyEnlightenment.com. Its e-newsletter has a subscription of more than 14,000. Shian has been active in Dharma work for more than 5 years. He also just had his second book, The Daily Enlightenment 1: Jul ??C Dec, published recently.

 

Jiro is a spiritual teacher & a Cert. Usui Reiki Master. Through spiritual and healing workshops, he has guided many people to journey from within and unfold their highest potential of One Self. Through the years, he has conducted numerous un/conventional meditations that utilize western and eastern methodologies to heighten the consciousness. His clients are strengthened with faith, trust, love, gratitude & compassion for others and especially to the self. Jiro emphasizes that love is the transformation & source of all creations and that all power shall come from the selfless love.  

 

Tan Hwee San is a trained counsellor and therapist. She is very passionate and committed in her work of empowering, healing and spreading love and light, to awake individuals?? consciousness. Her clients are empowered with insight, clarity and direction in their life issues. Hwee San is also trained in facilitating groups. She has facilitated numerous workshops that promote personal growth and spirituality such as ??Love Yourself??, ??Transformation Journey??, ???Self Mandala?? and Enneagram workshops.

 

The Cultural Compass, managed by a group of volunteers, is a social entrepreneurship initiative that promotes cultural understanding. The Cultural Compass conducts tour at the Shuang Lin Monastery, to explore the anthropological issues of human interactions and their impact on the society. You can find out more at www.culturalcompass.org.   Founded in 1898, the Shuang Lin Monastery is one of the oldest monasteries in the South East Asia. Its founding and existence to this day provides a backdrop for visitors to understand the dreams, passions and aspirations of migrants in their new homeland. The monastery has become the central compass point where the East meets the West, Yesterday meets Tomorrow.

 

Tan Boon Beng or "bb" as he is fondly known, is a floundering student of many eminent Tibetan teachers. He is currently a teacher by profession and heads an active, nimble and effective Buddhist welfare organization, called the Charitable Assistance Society (CAS), http://members.tripodasia.com.sg/cas. Its past projects include hosting "The Mystical Arts of Tibet", a Richard Gere production at the Esplanade Concert Hall and sponsoring HH the Dalai Lama's infinite wishes and programmes. One of which is the permanent offering of more than 150 Sanghas in exile. He takes delight in writing, under- or out-performing expectations and above all, trying hard to make the world a funnier and happier place.

     

As long as we have compassion,
our "ocean of tears"* would not be able to drown us.
This is the reason the Buddha can keep His smile.



- Thich Nhat Hanh (Translated by editor ) *Great sorrow

 

www.TheDailyEnlightenment.com

 

 

Youth Ministry Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery

 

aims to make a positive difference in the lives of young adults by supporting your career aspirations and spiritual growths in a relevant and practical way. Staffed by a team of young professionals, the Youth Ministry offers you effective ways to get in touch with Buddhism. Contact us if you wish to find out more about Buddhism, attend our activities, volunteer, initiate a project, or just make a difference. Don??t hesitate!

 

|  6849 5346  |  youth@kmspks.org  |  www.kmspks.org/youth  |

 

*** I??m printed on recycled paper. Recycle Me - Pass me onto someone who will may need this info *** 

 

___________________

From Priscilla:

Subject: Fw: Why I Forward Jokes
 A man and his dog were walking along a road. The man was enjoying the scenery, when it suddenly occurred to him that he was dead. He remembered dying, and that the dog walking beside him had been dead for years.
 He wondered where the road was leading them. After a while, they came to a high, white stone wall along
 one side of the road. It looked like fine marble. At
 the top of a long hill, it was broken by a tall arch
 that glowed in the sunlight. When he was standing
 before it he saw a magnificent gate in the arch that
 looked like Mother of Pearl, and the street that led
 to the gate looked like pure gold. He and the dog
 walked toward the gate, and as he got closer, he saw a man at a desk to one side.
 When he was close enough, he called out, "Excuse me, where are we? "This is Heaven, sir," the man answered.
 "! Wow! Would you happen to have some water?" the man asked. "Of course, sir. Come right in, and I'll have
 some iced water brought right up."
 The man gestured, and the gate began to open. "Can my friend," gesturing toward his dog, "come in too?" the traveler asked.
 I'm sorry, sir, but we don't accept pets."
 The man thought a moment and then turned back toward the road and continued the way he had been going with his dog. After another long walk, and at the top of another long hill,he came to a dirt road which led through a farm gate that looked as if it had never
 been closed. There was no fence.
 As he approached the gate, he saw a man inside,
 leaning against a tree and reading a book.
 "Excuse me!" he called to the reader. "Do you have any water?"
 "Yeah, sure, there's a pump over there". The man
 pointed to a place that couldn't be seen from
 outside the gate.

Come on in." "How about my friend here?" the traveler gestured to the dog. "There should be a bowl by the pump."
 They went through the gate and sure enough, there was an old fashioned hand pump with a bowl beside it. The traveler filled the bowl and took a long drink
 himself, then he gave some to the dog. When they
 were full, he and the dog walked back toward the man
 who was standing by the tree waiting for them.

 "What do you call this place?" the traveler asked.
 "This is Heaven," was the answer.
 "Well, that's confusing," the traveler said. "The man
 down the road said that was Heaven, too."
 "Oh, you mean the place with the gold street and
 pearly gates?
 Nope. That's Hell."
"Doesn't it make you mad for them to use heaven's name like that?"
 "No. I can see how you might think so, but we're just
 happy that they screen out the folk! s who'll leave
 their best friends behind."


 Soooo... Sometimes, we wonder why friends keep
 forwarding jokes to us without writing a word, maybe
 this could explain: When you are very busy, but still
 want to keep in touch, guess what you do? You
 forward jokes. When you have nothing to say, but still
 want to keep contact, you forward jokes. When you have something to say, but don't know what, and
 don't know how, you forward jokes.
 And to let you know that you are still remembered, you are still important, you are still loved, you are
 still cared for, guess what you get?
 A forwarded joke.

 So my friend, next time if you get a joke, don't think
 that you've been sent just another forwarded joke, but that you've been thought of today and your
 friend on the other end of your computer wanted to
 send you a smile...



Priscilla
 
Peace Be With you