SuttaCentral

Asking for blessings


#1

I shortened it.

Do therevadan buddhist ideally ask for blessings from The Buddha (as a preference) or is that strictly a Mahayana thing (as with they ask blessings to the bodhisattvas and deities as well)?

I know it is in the suttas (as someone linked in my original post) but as a discussion, do theravadans do it for whatever reason or are asking for blessings (choice) strictly mahayana?

I only know that Zen Veitnamese do it. However, I dont know if it is personal preference given culture or part of Dharmic practice such as meditation, and giving, and bowing to the Buddha, so forth?


#2

Not in my experience. For us, chanting and bowing to the Buddha is about recollecting his qualities.

But traditional Theravadins with a devotional emphasis may well think of their devotions in a different way, believing that they are invoking an eternal essence of the Buddha.


#3

Hmm. Interesting. I was talking to someone in another forum whose wife is Buddhist (think Pureland). I visited a Pureland temple. The owner said the temple is set up to where those coming from christian (and abrahamic) backgrounds have a comfortable transition. A few others I know externalize The Buddha and The Dharma (chanting to a physical scroll with The Dharma on it for its blessings.)

Im not that familar with Theravadin compared, but it did give me an off feeling nonetheless.


#4

… The Buddha Awakened in that very life, lived 45 to teach the Dhamma and establish the trainings for humans, gods, … and then died. Escaping rebirth and samsara entirely, by that complete Awakening.

I do not ask for the Buddha’s blessing, because the Teaching was given.

Imo it is good to Recollect; it may not be good to fantasize, project, or invent. A lifetime is limited, and one should be diligent in practice…


#5

From a strictly linguistic perspective, the English word “blessing” would not appear to be something associated with Buddhist practice. The Oxford English Dictionary defines “blessing” as follows:

" Authoritative declaration of divine favour and countenance, by God or one speaking in his name; benediction; passing into:"

" Invocation of divine favour by any one."

" The bestowal of divine favour and prospering influence; favour and prospering influence of God."

" A beneficent gift of God, nature, etc.; anything that makes happy or prosperous; a boon."

Perhaps the only English definition of “blessing” that is potentially consistent with Buddhist teachings is this one:

“The rendering of grateful adoration.”

Or possibly this one listed in the OED as obsolete:

" A charm, spell, incantation."

And that definition only seems marginally relevant if by “incantation” one includes the chants that Buddhists recite to recall the Buddha’s teachings.


#6

Hmm. I know when I looked it up in the suttas it also does mention omens (and spells, etc). What would make up for various cultures that ask for The Buddhas (and various buddhas) blessings without influence from any abrahamic belief (therefore the belief of divinity)?


#7

Hey. What is the pencil-icon message with the other alerts? I pops us as a history/private message and my original OP, but I dont know what its for.


#8

Having been blessed by the suttas this year, I find it inconceivable to ask for anything else. :pray:


#9

Good question!
A forum member with certain privileges relating to their trust level made an edit to the topic title. The following should help explain trust levels.

:slightly_smiling_face:


#10

Thats confusing (and new). Is flagging a warning?


#11

Who do I ask to clarify?


#12

@unveiledartist I somewhat expect you’ll get a friendly explanation reply from our excellent moderators, but in case you might be worried, I’ll offer a comment. (I’m just a member.)

Flagging is perhaps just one person’s expressed concern, that our forum rules or community guidelines might need moderation or guidance. This is generally quite a friendly polite and mutally respectful forum, and it’s that way because of community commitment to each other. I myself have benefited from such communications! If someone fears a post might be misunderstood, or have a deletious effect, it might get flagged, and moderators might post or private message about the concern. This imo is a gift, as (i assume) most of us most of the time want to communicate at our best, and unless we are Perfected Ones are liable to mis step now and then.

This is just my opinion! :slight_smile:
Regarding change of title of the thread: I think this might have been done in this case to encourage responses to your good questions, and to be easier to see in the forum lists. This is however a guess.

:slight_smile: Welcome.


#13

Thank you. I read through the lost of trusts and have been here a long while. We don’t have much fluid discussions and threads pop up often unless one is here for a number of years. I don’t know where I am on the trust thing. Never checked (if I could?).

I’ve not been to other forums like this. Flagging on other non academic forums flagging is usually has disciplinary procedures I.e. points off before one is banned. It depends on the moderators if one gets a warning or accused from the get-go. I never had reason to expect that on this site given the purpose (Dhamma :slight_smile: ) and layout and most definitely the people.

In other words, I’m used to Flags being disciplinary procedures towards suspension and bans. It threw me off guard getting it here


#14

Sorry for the confusion! You haven’t been flagged. I posted the link only for the explanation of trust levels that was in it.

A user with trust level 3 is able to edit others’ topic titles, among other privileges listed in the link I shared. That was what occured and why you received the message about an edit.


#15

Hm. Thank you.

So trust level three members can edit other peoples titles if they feel its appropriate? (Clarification)

One of the requirements is reading I think 60 mins of reading posts. Does the site record how long you are on a certain page?


#16

Greetings @unveiledartist :slight_smile:
This discussion would be better continued in the Meta category, about the nuts and bolts of the forum. We like to make sure topics remain focused, as this assists with organisation and future use of the archive and search functions.

Perhaps if you could skim over the topics in the Meta category, to see if there are already answers to your questions and then post a new thread with a list of specific questions you’d like answered.
We’ll do our best to clarify :smiley:

:anjal::dharmawheel: