Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Enlightenment on a Full Moon Night (sutra)

Night sky: March 2018 two – full moons, the Plough explained
Boudhnath stupa, Kathmandu, Nepal
As was the case this January, there are two full Moons this March, one on March 2nd and one on the 31st. The second full moon in a month is popularly known as a "Blue Moon" even though this is not the original definition.

That stated, a Blue Moon was the third full Moon in a season which contained four full moons. The occurrence of two full moons in January followed by two in March only takes place approximately four times every century.

Two moons this moonth (Pete Lawrence)
[So much for reading apocalyptic meaning into sky and star, celestial bodies and alignments. The blaze of rockets, however, may portend something of the deception foisted on us by NASA, ISS, and revelations by other countries' space programs.] More

Enlightenment on a full moon night
One full moon night the former-prince and now active wandering ascetic Siddhartha emerged from meditative absorption, asked the question, "Why is there suffering?" and reflected on how all things arise dependent on conditions.

"Suffering" (disappointment, unsatisfactoriness, pain, woe, dukkha) has 12 causal links. This is reflected on in an insight-meditation exercise called Dependent Origination, "With the arising of this, that comes to be; with its cessation, that ceases...."
  • It may seem a small point but it becomes important later. One thing does not really arise THEN another. They co-arise. So sometimes this is referred to as "conditioned co-genesis" and other names for paticca samuppadav. For example, when the five factors of fire (heat, fuel, wick, oxygen, the process of combustion) come together, flame arises. When does fire arise? Right at the moment of all of these factors being present in a functionally integrated way! Why? It is because what we call "fire" or a "flame" is not a thing but a process with these factors; it is empty; it is impersonal. The same is true of us (self) and the Five Aggregates clung to as Self.
Los Angeles Buddhist Vihara in Pasadena is on Facebook. Free program, open to all.
Enlightenment Sutra
John D. Ireland (trans.), Bodhi Sutra (Ud 1.1); Dhr. Seven, A. Larson (eds.), Wisdom Quarterly
In Asian iconography, based on Vedic tradition, the swastika indicates noble, enlightened.
Whatever will arise will also pass away.
Thus have I heard. At one time the Blessed One [the Buddha] was staying at Uruvela, beside the river Nerañjara at the foot of the Bodhi Tree, having just realized full enlightenment.

At that time he sat cross-legged for seven days experiencing the bliss of complete liberation.

Then at the end of those seven days, he emerged from that meditative absorption [calm, coherent, and concentrated state of mind called samadhi] and gave wise-attention during the first watch of the night to Dependent Origination (Conditional Arising) in forward order in this way:

This being, that is; from the arising of this, that arises -- which is is to say:
  1. With ignorance as condition, mental formations come to be;
  2. with mental formations as condition, consciousness comes to be;
  3. with consciousness as condition, name-and-form comes to be;
  4. with name-and-form as condition, the sixfold base comes to be;
  5. with the sixfold base as condition, contact comes to be;
  6. with contact as condition, feeling comes to be;
  7. with feeling as condition, craving comes to be;
  8. with craving as condition, grasping comes to be;
  9. with grasping as condition, becoming comes to be;
  10. with becoming as condition, (re)birth comes to be;
  11. with (re)birth as condition, aging-and-death, sorrow, lamentation, pain, grief, and despair come to be.
  12. This is the origin (the conditional arising) of this entire mass of suffering.
Then on realizing its significance on this occasion, the Blessed One uttered this inspired utterance:
When things become manifest
To the ardent meditating Brahmin,
All doubts then  because one understands
Each thing along with its [immediately preceding] cause.

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