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    Modern version of the Eternal Knot by Charles Huttner
A View on Buddhism
Teksty w jezyku polskim     Deutsche Seiten


Preliminaries and Dedication
Suffering: Of the Different Realms
Suffering: Of Change
Suffering: All-Pervasive
Karma: The 4 Laws of Karma
Karma: Is It Logical?


In order to make the most out of the following analytical meditations, it is important to realise that one should not only observe the analytical mind, but also the emotions and feelings that come up. It is adviseable to read the pages on Meditation Theory (chapter on Vipashyana) and Meditation Practice if you are not used to (analytical) meditation..
It is strongly advised to start with a good motivation beforehand, to take a few minutes to calm down (doing e.g. a brief breathing meditation is very good) and to dedicate the positive energy afterwards.
For this, the following traditional prayers can be used, but feel free to use any other positive and unselfish thoughts:

Taking Refuge

I go for refuge to the Buddha,
I go for refuge to the Dharma,
I go for refuge to the Sangha. (3x)

Setting the Mind to Enlightenment

By virtue of giving and so forth,
may I become a Buddha for the benefit of all sentient beings. (3x)

4 Immeasurables

May all sentient beings have equanimity, free from attachment, aggression and prejudice.
May they be happy, and have the causes for happiness.
May they be free from suffering and causes for suffering.
May they never be separated from the happiness that is free from suffering. (3x)

7-Limbed Prayer

Respectfully I prostrate with body, speech and mind;
I present clouds of every type of offerings, actual and imagined;
I declare all the negative actions I have done since beginningless time,
and rejoice in the merit of all Aryas and ordinary beings.
Please teacher, remain until cyclic existence ends
and turn the wheel of Dharma for all sentient beings.
I dedicate the virtues of myself and others to the great Enlightenment.


By this virtue may I soon
reach a Guru-Buddha-state,
and lead each and every being
to that state of Buddhahood.

May the precious Bodhicitta
not yet born, arise and grow
may that born have no decline
but increase forever more.

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The following list is quite long; it is advisable to concentrate on only one realm per session.

- Imagine being reborn in hell: continuous suffering of extreme heat or cold
- I continuously fight, I am wounded, excruciating pain, I die, I get up again and must fight a lost battle again
- Being continuously tortured, I am in a totally hopeless situation; not even death means an escape

Hungry Ghost
- Imagine being reborn as a hungry ghost: not having food or drink for years, but not dying as relief
- I continuously search for food and water, extremely hungry and thirsty
- When I think I found water, it changes into blood and pus. And when I desperately try to drink it, it burns like acid in my stomach

- Imagine being reborn as an animal; as a donkey in India, carrying too heavy loads in too much cold or heat.
- I have little to eat as a street dog, always fighting over food.
- I don't really understand anything about the world.
- Not understanding what happens, I only live by reflexes, fearing everything.
- Being alert for danger all the time; there are many other creatures trying to eat me.

Human Being
- Imagine being reborn a human being: {choose either a or b}
A) Somewhere in a Western country; in the rat-race for money, being lonely in a city of millions
- Somewhere in poor parts of Asia, overcrowded, noisy, no personal freedom, poor.
- Living in a dictatorship, being put in jail and tortured without any reason
- In Africa, in a famine, civil war and the population dying out because of aids.
B) Being born feels like being squashed between mountains.
- When I am born, everything feels hard, cold and painful.
- I will sooner or later meet with unpleasant things, situations and people.
- I will work hard to get the things I like, but often I will not get them, loose them, or they break down.
- I will sooner or later loose everything I love and care for.
- I will get sick, pain in the head, stomach, throat, intestines, joints, muscles
- Inevitably I get old, ugly, helpless, senile a wreck of body and mind.
- I will die, possibly in great pain and confusion.

- Imagine being reborn as a demigod: a nice life, but the gods above have more enjoyments and possessions.
- The gods steal away our beautiful women and children.
- We have to fight against them, these spoiled thieves.
- But however many wars we fight, they always win.
- The women who stay back at home, see their husbands die in visions.

- Imagine being reborn as a god: life is great, blissful, every desire instantly fulfilled.
- Not a worry in the world, everything is paradise, eternal youth.
- But sooner or later I will die here: my body will turn ugly, my possessions will not please me any more.
- My body will start to sweat and smell. the other gods will reject me.
- Worst of all, I will see my next rebirth as a pig, hungry ghost or evenin hell, because all my positive karma can be exhausted.

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Think of some nice experiences; skiing, a good movie, a beautiful sunset, great sex; and check the following:
- How long did it last?
- Did it really satisfy me?
- Can I think of any unchanging, lasting happiness in my or others' lives?
- Do relationships last forever? What about food, movies, holidays, flowers?
- Is the final result of nice experiences not always: parting, leaving, finishing, withering, decay and death?
- Is this really happiness?

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- How do I feel right now?
- Not very hungry, thirsty, not alone, not too unhappy, maybe even happy?
- My knees and back may hurt a bit, but for the rest maybe I am OK right now?
- Will this happiness stay forever?
- Am I ever sure about anything?
- Am I sure to live for 50 more years?
- Do I know what will happen after death?
- Am I sure I will be completely disappear or end in paradise?
- I may not believe in hell, but am I absolutely sure about that?
- The pain in my knees would stop if I moved, but would not some other problem come up sooner or later?

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1. Actions produce similar results; does it make sense that negative actions cause suffering, and positive actions give happiness?
2. No result without a cause; nothing arises without cause. Can I blame others for my problems when every happy or unpleasant experience comes from my own actions in the past?
3. Karma expands - just like an apple seed gives a tree which gives many apples, small negative actions may give rise to extensive suffering, small positive actions may give rise to extensive happiness; therefore we need to be very mindful of all our actions.
4. Once an action is done, the result is never lost; nothing just disappears without a reason. But still, positive karma can be prevented from ripening by one moment of anger and negative karma can be prevented from ripening by simple purifications
- We cannot eliminate problems that arise from negative actions in the past, but we can change our negative reactions to them to avoid more problems in the future.
- Understanding karma means taking full responsibility for my life!

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- The law of karma means that certain causes will bring about similar results.
- If I plant rice, can I expect to harvest potatoes?
- Can I think of any science in which cause and result is not an essential process?
- Can I think of any religion or philosophy which teaches that our actions do not have consequences?
- When I behave cruel to others, what results can I expect?
- When I am good to others, what result can I expect?
- If karma exists, who is responsible for my problems and happiness?

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Last updated:February 6, 2011