Meditation for BeginnersThe Noble Eightfold Path on the Mundane Level # 1The Buddha replied that the mind of anyone who cultivatessix forms of recollection will protect that person from all danger.Practising the Noble Eightfold Path is not just the duty of the saint or the monk striving for Nirvana –it is also a means by which the householder can secure happiness and prosperity in their personal lives, contributing to a harmonious society on the collective level. Indeed, without the Eightfold Path, life would be chaotic. The practice of the Noble Eightfold Path for laypeople may be different from that practiced by the Noble Ones, but it contains the same eight components.1. Right ViewThe section which follows gives an explanation of the Noble Eightfold Path on the mundane level as described in the Dhammapada commentary. It explains that Right View means wisdom to recognize the virtue of the Triple Gem as illustrated in the following Tale:In the city of Savatthi, two boys were friends. One boy came from a family with Right View, the other came from a family of False View. When the two boys played together, throwing a dice, the boy of Right View would recollect the virtue of the Lord Buddha with the words “Itipi so bhagava” and “Namo buddhassa” before throwing the dice. By contrast, the boy from the family of False View would recollect the virtue of varions heretics before throwing the dice with the words “Namo titthiyanam” (Praisebe to the heretics!) It turned out that the son from the family of Right View won every single game of dice – and the son from the family of False View lost every game.This tale has the moral that anyone established in Right View will always conquer those of False View.Recollection fo the virtues of the Buddha with the words “Itipi so bhagava araham sammasambuddho…”1.1 Right View helps us to escape all dangerIt is said that those of Right View are protected from all danger, with protection against malevolent spirits as a case in point. The same tale continues the previous tale of the boy of Right View with the following accunt:One day the father of the boy of Right View took the boy in the cart to gather kindling wood outside the city gates. Having loaded the kindling onto the cart, they made their way home. On the way, they stopped to let the buffalp graze near a cemetery. The buffalo escaped and made its way back throught the city gates. The father pursued the buffalo on foot, leaving the boy asleep alone in the cart, thinking to come back for him as soon as he could find the buffalo. However, by the time he managed to catch the buffalo. Inside the city, it was already dark and the guards had closed the gates. Not seeing his father return, the boy recollected the virtue of the Lord Buddha with the words “Itipiso bhagava…” until falling asleep.Two ogres prowled in the night looking for prey. One of the ogres was of Right View. the other was of False View. Seeing the boy asleep in the cart, the False ViewOgre said to the other that they ought to eat the boy up, but the other ogre forbade him. The Fales View orgre ignored the warning and grabbed the boy’s feet, waking him. The boy was startled and exclaimed aloud “Namobuddhassa…” In surprise the False View ogre dropped the boy’s feet and retreated. The other ogre reprimanded him saying “Now look what you ‘ve done-you have sinned –now you have to make up for your wickedness by finding some food for this boy.” The Right View ogre watched over the boy while the other flew away through the air to the royal palace where he found and ornate platter of delicacies, bringing it back for the boy. The ogres then transformed themselves to look like the boy’s mother and father. Having fed the boy, they in scribed a message on the platter in the cart with the boy and went on their way.Recollection fo the virtues of the Dhamma with the words “Svakkhato bhagava dhamma…”In the morning, the courtiers noticed that the platter was missing and had the whole city searched. They found the platter in the cart with the boy. They took both the platter and the boy before king Pasenadi of kosala. The Ling learned from the boy that his mother and father had brought food for him on the platter. Having read the message written on the platter the king tok the boy and his father to meet the Lord Buddha, asking the Buddha how simply recollecting the Buddha’s virtue could be so potent in protection.The Buddha replied that the mind of anyone who cultivates six forms of recollection will protect that person from all danger. The Buddha then taught that a person who wants to cultivate recollection should recollect the following:1. Recollection fo the virtues of the Buddha with the words “Itipi so bhagava araham sammasambuddho…”2. Recollection fo the virtues of the Dhamma with the words “Svakkhato bhagava dhamma…”3. Recollection of the virtues of the Sangha with the words “Supatipanno bhagavato savakasangho…”4. Recollection of the loathsomeness of the body (mindfulness o the body with the words “kesa loma…”5. Recollection of compassion towards other living beings with the words “Sabbe satta dukkha pamuncanti…”6. Recollection of loving kindness towards other living beings with the words “Sabbe satta avera hontu…”Recollection of the virtues of the Sangha with the words “Supatipanno bhagavato savakasangho…”Anyone who cultivates these six recollections, by night and by day, all day long or even three times per day or once-a-day can be counted amongst the worthy disciples of the Tathagata and will be protected from al danger both in waking and in sleep. The wise who know the virtue of the Triple Gem. Who cultivate these six types of recollection, can be consideredas beomg established in Right View at the mundane level.Furthermore, those who are able to eradicate False View from their minds can be said to be those of Right View. The False Views which should be removed from the mind are as follows:1. The view that generosity is fruitless;2. The view that any form of worship or respect is fruitless;3. The view that wholesome action and unwholesome action have no retribution (lack of belief in the Law of Karma);4. The view that this world lacks reality or doesn’t exist;5. The view that the afterworld lacks reality or doesn’t exist;6. The view that serving one’s mother is fruitless;7. The view that serving one’s father is fruitless;8. The view that monastics, even those who practice properly, are still unable to attain by their wisdom, in this world or the next, any fruit from their practice or to teach anyone else to do the same.Furthermore, anyone who believes that death is the end of the story (that there is no life after death) or that there is no afterlife is also someone of false View. As for those who hnow the fruits of generosity, respect, filial piety and monastic practice is a person of Right View.
The Noble Eightfold Path on the Mundane Level # 1
Practising the Noble Eightfold Path is not just the duty of the saint or the monk striving for Nirvana –it is also a means by which the householder can secure happinessDhamma Articles > Meditation Articles and Techniques > Meditation for Beginners
[ Sep 24th, 2011 ] - [ : 11566 ]