Bodhicitta

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths - what can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?
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Nicholas Weeks
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Bodhicitta

Post by Nicholas Weeks »

Not sure if this term has the special meaning that it has in Mahayana, but one meaning is living many lives to benefit other beings. Altruistic motivation in thought, word & deed, in short.

Here is a little booklet from Master Shixian (d. 1734) on the subject:

Exhortation to BodhiMind.pdf
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Though one may conquer a thousand times a thousand men in battle, yet he indeed is the noblest victor who conquers himself. Self-conquest is far better than the conquest of others. No god or devil can turn into defeat the victory of a person who is self-subdued and ever restrained in conduct. Dhammapada
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Nicholas Weeks
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Nicholas Weeks »

A summarizing verse:
What is bodhi mind? It is our mind
Intent upon awakening ourselves and awakening others;
Benefitting ourselves and benefitting others.
Such a mind is clear.
It turns from confusion and returns to enlightenment
It renounces what is deviant and embodies what is proper.
Such a mind discern right from wrong. It harbors no inversions.
Such a mind is absolutely straight.
Though one may conquer a thousand times a thousand men in battle, yet he indeed is the noblest victor who conquers himself. Self-conquest is far better than the conquest of others. No god or devil can turn into defeat the victory of a person who is self-subdued and ever restrained in conduct. Dhammapada
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Nicholas Weeks
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Nicholas Weeks »

Here is a version with commentary by Master Hsuan Hua:

https://www.berkeleymonastery.org/uploa ... _cover.pdf
Though one may conquer a thousand times a thousand men in battle, yet he indeed is the noblest victor who conquers himself. Self-conquest is far better than the conquest of others. No god or devil can turn into defeat the victory of a person who is self-subdued and ever restrained in conduct. Dhammapada
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Lucas Oliveira
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Lucas Oliveira »

Bodhi Citta

just thinking..

has anything to do with the "Citta" discussion?
Original mind

Further information: Ajahn Maha Bua § Some basic teachings on the 'Citta'

The mind (Pali: citta, mano, used interchangeably as "heart" or "mind" en masse), within the context of the Forest Tradition, refers to the most essential aspect of an individual, that carries the responsibility of "taking on" or "knowing" mental preoccupations.[note 12] While the activities associated with thinking are often included when talking about the mind, they are considered mental processes separate from this essential knowing nature, which is sometimes termed the "primal nature of the mind".[46][note 13]

Original Mind is considered to be radiant, or luminous (Pali: "pabhassara").[46][48] Teachers in the forest tradition assert that the mind simply "knows and does not die."[35][note 14] The mind is also a fixed-phenomenon (Pali: "thiti-dhamma"); the mind itself does not "move" or follow out after its preoccupations, but rather receives them in place.[46] Since the mind as a phenomenon often eludes attempts to define it, the mind is often simply described in terms of its activities.[note 15]

The Primal or Original Mind in itself is however not considered to be equivalent to the awakened state but rather as a basis for the emergence of mental formations,[51] it is not to be confused for a metaphysical statement of a true self[52][53] and its radiance being an emanation of avijjā it must eventually be let go of.[54]

Ajaan Mun further argued that there is a unique class of "objectless" or "themeless" consciousness specific to Nirvana, which differs from the consciousness aggregate.[55] Scholars in Bangkok at the time of Ajaan Mun stated that an individual is wholly composed of and defined by the five aggregates,[note 16] while the Pali Canon states that the aggregates are completely ended during the experience of Nirvana.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thai_Fore ... ginal_mind
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Lucas Oliveira
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Lucas Oliveira »

Wayfarer wrote:
That is because bodhisattvas are able to be voluntarily re-born - as the statement says - out of 'compassion and prayer' rather than being compelled by karma and klesa. But, nowhere does this statement say that Arhats are re-born anywhere, I had understood that the whole condition of the Arhat was 'no further re-birth'.
Arya-bodhisattvas have realised the emptiness of all appearances, so they are not bound by them any more. Arhats are also free from clinging to phenomena, so they are not bound by samsara either. The difference in the case of bodhisattvas, as you say, is that they are driven by bodhicitta. Since arhats do not have bodhicitta, there is no cause of birth at all. And that is why it is repeated in Mahayana scriptures that the most important thing is to have compassion for all beings, otherwise a bodhisattva strays to the path of sravakas and ends birth in nirvana.

Astus
https://dharmawheel.net/viewtopic.php?p=379440#p379440
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tamdrin
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by tamdrin »

Bodhicitta is the cause of becoming a Buddha. It is not talked about in Theravada.
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Lucas Oliveira
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Lucas Oliveira »

tamdrin wrote: Sun Sep 20, 2020 1:11 am Bodhicitta is the cause of becoming a Buddha. It is not talked about in Theravada.
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Inedible
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Inedible »

Bodhichitta is one of those words that means different things depending on which branch of Buddhism it is discussed in. The Mahayana version is the most general. It is the desire to attain Buddhahood for the benefit of "all mother sentient beings". Because on a long enough time frame everyone has been your mother in a previous life and kindly gave you life. It was one of the reasons I have always had trouble with Mahayana and Vajrayana groups when I found them in person. My main objection was that you can't put off your own Liberation from Samsara for the purpose of giving it to everyone else first. If you don't have a thing for yourself you can't give it to others. And if all of the Buddhas of the past really did vow to empty Samsara before becoming a Buddha then what are we doing here still in it. The usual answer to that is that we only think we are still here.
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Coëmgenu
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Coëmgenu »

This is something I see thrown around a lot in Tibetan Buddhism, namely the shepherd vow and hyperbolous language, generally in poetry/prayer, concerning "emptying samsara." The problem is that neither increase nor decrease is to be found in the sattvadhātu, meaning it will never ever be empty of sattvas and nibbāna will never be filled up with ex-sattvas. In light of this, IMO bodhisattva vows like the shepherd vow have to be a provisional strategy to motivate your practice. At the higher bhūmis, it will have to be discarded for the benefit of living beings. We simply aren't as useful as worldly sattvas or non-bhūmika bodhisattvas.
If you see a river, pray that beings gain entrance into the stream and into the ocean of wisdom. If you see a reservoir, pray that beings swiftly taste the one taste of the Dharma. If you see a pond, pray that beings become great in locution and skillful in preaching. If you see a well, pray that beings draw deep from the well of reason to disclose all dharmas. If you see a spring, pray that beings have inexhaustible roots of virtue. If you see a bridge, pray that beings carry all across to safety, as via a bridge. If you see a waterfall, pray that all beings cleanse the stains of delusion.
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by binocular »

Nicholas Weeks wrote: Fri Sep 18, 2020 10:55 pm A summarizing verse:
What is bodhi mind? It is our mind
Intent upon awakening ourselves and awakening others;
Benefitting ourselves and benefitting others.
Such a mind is clear.
It turns from confusion and returns to enlightenment
It renounces what is deviant and embodies what is proper.
Such a mind discern right from wrong. It harbors no inversions.
Such a mind is absolutely straight.
It sure feels good to feel superior to others.
If you can't build with them, don't chill with them.
binocular
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by binocular »

Coëmgenu wrote: Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:31 pm This is something I see thrown around a lot in Tibetan Buddhism, namely the shepherd vow and hyperbolous language, generally in poetry/prayer, concerning "emptying samsara." The problem is that neither increase nor decrease is to be found in the sattvadhātu, meaning it will never ever be empty of sattvas and nibbāna will never be filled up with ex-sattvas. In light of this, IMO bodhisattva vows like the shepherd vow have to be a provisional strategy to motivate your practice. At the higher bhūmis, it will have to be discarded for the benefit of living beings. We simply aren't as useful as worldly sattvas or non-bhūmika bodhisattvas.
This body comes into being through conceit. And yet it is by relying on conceit that conceit is to be abandoned.’

https://www.dhammatalks.org/suttas/AN/AN4_159.html
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Mahabrahma
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Mahabrahma »

Coëmgenu wrote: Sun Sep 20, 2020 3:31 pm This is something I see thrown around a lot in Tibetan Buddhism, namely the shepherd vow and hyperbolous language, generally in poetry/prayer, concerning "emptying samsara." The problem is that neither increase nor decrease is to be found in the sattvadhātu, meaning it will never ever be empty of sattvas and nibbāna will never be filled up with ex-sattvas. In light of this, IMO bodhisattva vows like the shepherd vow have to be a provisional strategy to motivate your practice. At the higher bhūmis, it will have to be discarded for the benefit of living beings. We simply aren't as useful as worldly sattvas or non-bhūmika bodhisattvas.
Have you ever noticed the goal of Guatama Buddha was to make everyone a Buddha like Himself, emancipating the Saha world, entering it all into Mahaparinirvana? Do you think all of this suffering will go on forever? I guarantee you it won't. How wretched it would be. All of this nonsense pain and the asamkyas or kalpas of the entire existence of the Saha world is like a lightning flash in the scope of Eternity. And there aren't infinite people fallen into the Saha world. There is hope in the Buddha, and trust in every bit of Metta He gives, because you are just as powerful as the Buddha, with His strength and truth fully inside of you, since you have taken refuge in Him. Bodhisattva vows are never to be discarded, but you can be a Bodhisattva and not suffer at all, in a Heaven, Pure Buddha Land, or in the void of Mahaparinirvana, and still be working for the benefit of all beings.
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Coëmgenu »

If the shepherd vow is important to you, I'll not desconstruct it, but I will give you this:
"Sariputra, the enormously wrong view refers to seeing increase in the realm of sentient beings or to seeing decrease in the realm of sentient beings. Sentient beings that hold this enormously wrong view, because of it, are born without eyes. Therefore, they mistakenly go the evil way in the long night. For this reason, they go down to the evil life-paths in their current lives. Sariputra, the enormous perilous tribulation refers to one's obstinate adherence to the view of increase or decrease in the realm of sentient beings. Sariputra, those who are obstinate in their wrong adherence misguidedly walk the evil way in the long night. For this reason, they will go down to the evil life-paths in their future lives.

"Sariputra, foolish ordinary beings do not see, in accord with true reality, the one dharma realm. Because they do not see, in accord with true reality, the one dharma realm, they invoke the wrong view in their minds, saying that the realm of sentient beings increases or that the realm of sentient beings decreases. Sariputra, when the Tathagata is in the world, my disciples will not take this view. However, over 500 years after my parinirvana, there will be many sentient beings that are foolish and senseless. Although they will remove their hair and beard, donning the three Dharma robes to appear as a śramaṇa in the Buddha's Dharma, they will not have within themselves the virtuous ways of a śramaṇa. People of this type are actually not śramaṇas, but they will claim themselves to be śramaṇas. They are actually not the disciples of the Buddha though they allege to be, saying, 'I am a śramaṇa, a true disciple of the Buddha."
(Anūnatvāpūrṇatvanirdeśaparivarta T668)
Last edited by Coëmgenu on Sun Sep 20, 2020 4:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
If you see a river, pray that beings gain entrance into the stream and into the ocean of wisdom. If you see a reservoir, pray that beings swiftly taste the one taste of the Dharma. If you see a pond, pray that beings become great in locution and skillful in preaching. If you see a well, pray that beings draw deep from the well of reason to disclose all dharmas. If you see a spring, pray that beings have inexhaustible roots of virtue. If you see a bridge, pray that beings carry all across to safety, as via a bridge. If you see a waterfall, pray that all beings cleanse the stains of delusion.
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by binocular »

Mahabrahma wrote: Sun Sep 20, 2020 4:43 pmHave you ever noticed the goal of Guatama Buddha was to make everyone a Buddha like Himself, emancipating the Saha world, entering it all into Mahaparinirvana? Do you think all of this suffering will go on forever? I guarantee you it won't. How wretched it would be. All of this nonsense pain and the asamkyas or kalpas of the entire existence of the Saha world is like a lightning flash in the scope of Eternity. And there aren't infinite people fallen into the Saha world.
This is a rather Abrahamic rendition ...
There is hope in the Buddha, and trust in every bit of Metta He gives, because you are just as powerful as the Buddha, with His strength and truth fully inside of you, since you have taken refuge in Him.
And this sounds slike something from the Book of Mormon ...
If you can't build with them, don't chill with them.
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Mahabrahma
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Re: Bodhicitta

Post by Mahabrahma »

Once I asked a friend a deep question and He replied with: "section logical, section logical, section logical." I advise you to use your logic to figure things out in this instance, and avoid your prejudices, for they are clear hinderances to the truth you already know.
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