Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
ieee23
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by ieee23 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:02 am

James Tan wrote:
Sat Jun 02, 2018 9:46 am
If a person is too rational it is difficult to become devotional . Being devotional is emotional . However , devotional is essential to soften the hardened mind. It does help a person to be spiritual instead of being philosophical all the time .
I think highly of metta, but I've always seen it as a meditation. It wasn't until a comment in this thread that I had the thought it could be seen as "devotional". I would write something about how "devotional" needs to be defined for this thread, but I think people here already over-intellectualize everything.

Reading your point about emotion and opening your heart & mind, I thought bout my local Vihara. It has a meditation session one evenin a week. It includes a small amount of devotions and ritual before & after. I appreciated it a few years ago when I had some tough times. I picked up on the emotions the people there raised in Buddhism felt and that helped me feel better. I wouldn't want devotional practices and rituals to be my main course, but thinking about those experiences I would have to agree they do have value.
Whatever a bhikkhu frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of his mind. - MN 19

SarathW
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by SarathW » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:19 am

you get scared or terrified, just recollect me:
This is a very common practice in Sri Lanka.
We used to recollect the Buddha when we were fear of the dark or walking near a cemetery. (the fear of ghosts)
“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

justindesilva
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by justindesilva » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:46 am

I was born in a buddhist family in Sri lanka. Ever since I could remember as a chikd I went to the temple and joined others in the village temple. As far as I can remember almost all in the temple were devotional practitioners. Even the uposatha observers on poya days stfarted the day by offering flowers to budda with liighting an oil lamp. That was devotional when it could have been an occadsion of meditation on the withering of the flower and the flame as the mind. When I became more aware or enlightened I did so.
On wesak or poson or festival poya days the buddhist folks had prcessions and made pandals which was identified as amisa pooja. With damma education from the temple a lot changed with maturity to observe uposatha and meditation to reach the higher mental status.
Thereby I infer that devotional practise is good and unconsciously it develops the mind to observe proper pancasila and to reach higher status of mind.
I also wish to say that my devotionsional feelings remsin with me subconsciously too.

SarathW
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by SarathW » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:55 am

made pandals
As a child, I used to love them.
I still like them.


“As the lamp consumes oil, the path realises Nibbana”

philosopher
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by philosopher » Sun Sep 16, 2018 5:07 am

What are some examples of devotional practices that one might do at home? I must be a very typical Western Buddhist, because I don't even know what this entails. Chanting? Lighting incense in front of a Buddha image?

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Sam Vara
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by Sam Vara » Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:17 am

philosopher wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 5:07 am
What are some examples of devotional practices that one might do at home? I must be a very typical Western Buddhist, because I don't even know what this entails. Chanting? Lighting incense in front of a Buddha image?
Yes, many Westerners that I know do both on a regular basis, and also make offerings of water, food, and flowers. I have found it to be a useful aspect of the practice..

James Tan
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by James Tan » Sun Sep 16, 2018 9:22 am

Devotional chanting prayers offering is a good way of accumulating wholesome kamma .
:reading:

philosopher
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by philosopher » Sat Sep 22, 2018 6:01 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:17 am
philosopher wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 5:07 am
What are some examples of devotional practices that one might do at home? I must be a very typical Western Buddhist, because I don't even know what this entails. Chanting? Lighting incense in front of a Buddha image?
Yes, many Westerners that I know do both on a regular basis, and also make offerings of water, food, and flowers. I have found it to be a useful aspect of the practice..
:anjali: I'm excited to begin these. Can food that is offered by consumed at a later point? (I need a very basic primer, it seems. :tongue: )

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Sam Vara
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by Sam Vara » Sat Sep 22, 2018 6:26 am

philosopher wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 6:01 am
Sam Vara wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 6:17 am
philosopher wrote:
Sun Sep 16, 2018 5:07 am
What are some examples of devotional practices that one might do at home? I must be a very typical Western Buddhist, because I don't even know what this entails. Chanting? Lighting incense in front of a Buddha image?
Yes, many Westerners that I know do both on a regular basis, and also make offerings of water, food, and flowers. I have found it to be a useful aspect of the practice..
:anjali: I'm excited to begin these. Can food that is offered by consumed at a later point? (I need a very basic primer, it seems. :tongue: )
I'm not sure about that bit! I myself only do chanting and offering incense at home, and although I've seen food offered at a home shrine in meditation groups, I've not seen what happens to it later. It seems to be a custom of Thai or Sri Lankan origin, so perhaps there are others here more familiar with those customs that can help.

thang
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by thang » Sat Sep 22, 2018 9:34 am

A Western psychiatrist who had ordained as a monk had to learn this lesson. He asked permission to stay at WatBa Pong for the three-month rains retreat in order to have a master under whom he could really practice meditation. Several days later, when Achaan Chah announced to the assembled monks that chanting of the sutras from 3:30 to 4:40 A.M. and from 5:00 to 6:00 P.M. was a mandatory part of the rains retreat, this newly ordained Western monk raised his hand and began to argue loudly that he had come to meditate, not to waste time chanting. Such a Western style argument with the teacher in public was a shock to many of the other monks. Achaan Chah explained calmly that real meditation had to do with attitude and awareness in any activity, not just with seeking silence in a forest cottage. He made a point of insisting that the psychiatrist would have to be prompt for every chanting session for the entire rains retreat if he wished to stay at WatBa Pong.
Ajahn_Chah_A_Still_Forest_Pool
"Bhikkhus, whatever the Tathāgata speaks, utters, or expounds
in the interval between
the night when he awakens to the unsurpassed perfect enlightenment
and the night when he attains final nibbāna,
all that is just so and not otherwise"
;

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StormBorn
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Re: Do you like or dislike devotional practices?

Post by StormBorn » Sat Sep 22, 2018 5:01 pm

I don't like or dislike, but i don't do them as there's no need or a wanting for me to do them (I'm not an ariya :smile: ). The Middle Path doesn't have superficial rituals, my effort is to develop the Middle Path within me.

Dhammapada 188-192
They go to many a refuge,
to mountains & forests,
to park, tree shrines, pagodas:
people threatened with danger.
That’s not the secure refuge,
not the supreme refuge,
that’s not the refuge,
having gone to which,
you gain release
from all suffering & stress.
But when, having gone
to the Buddha, Dhamma,
& Sangha for refuge,
you see with right discernment
the four noble truths–
stress,
the cause of stress,
the transcending of stress,
& the noble eightfold path,
the way to the stilling of stress:
that’s the secure refuge,
that, the supreme refuge,
that is the refuge,
having gone to which,
you gain release
from all suffering & stress.
“Greater in battle than the man who would conquer a thousand-thousand men, is he who would conquer just one—himself.”

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