I found this image somewhere on the ‘net a few weeks ago and thought it would be a good image to use today. Tonight I go to the Marpa Gompa sangha for an evening of meditation and reading from a book called The Jewel Ornament of Liberation, by Gampopa. I missed last Thursday’s session because of fatigue and wanting to spend some precious time with my wife while she was in Calgary. I don’t want to miss tonight’s session as on Sunday I will be taking refuge.
For those who don’t know what refuge is in terms of Buddhism, it is the process by which one becomes a Buddhist. I am becoming a Buddhist following the Karmapa school of Buddhism, a form of Tibetan Buddhism. What is important to note is the fact that I am not becoming a Buddhist monk. My hair stays on my head and I continue to wear normal clothing and lead a normal life. What changes is the addition of a spiritual dimension that has a form based on the eightfold path, which is divided into three main sections called prajna, sila and samadhi. I have borrowed from Wikipedia (edited of course to highlight the keys for me and how this will help guide my “process” of becoming a healthier human.
- Prajna is the wisdom that purifies the mind:
- viewing reality as it is, not just as it appears to be;
- intention of renunciation, freedom and harmlessness.
- Sila is the ethics or morality:
- speaking in a truthful and non-hurtful way;
- acting in a non-harmful way;
- a non-harmful livelihood.
- Samadhi is the mental discipline required to develop mastery over one’s own mind:
- making an effort to improve;
- awareness to see things for what they are with clear consciousness, being aware of the present reality within oneself
- correct meditation or concentration
I will keep an open mind about this process and listen carefully to my own inner core when there is anything that doesn’t seem to fit. I will be looking very closely at how Jungian psychology and Buddhism mirror each other. And likely, that will be done here in the future as my experiences with Buddhism become deeper rather than just depending on information from books.