Ten Thoughts of the Buddha

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This is a photo I took in 2013, when I visited the Vietnamese Buddhist temple not too far from my home. I had completely forgotten I had taken this photo, but stumbled upon it recently and wanted to share.

The Ten Thoughts of the Buddha (佛教十項心念) do not appear to be a standard Buddhist list, but might be something local to this temple. Anyhow, the translated list is:

  1. While meditating on the body, do not hope or pray to be exempt from sickness. Without sickness, desires and passions can easily arise.
  2. In your life, do not hope or pray not to have any difficulties.  Without difficulties, arrogance can easily arise.
  3. While meditating on the mind, do not hope or pray not to encounter hindrances.  Without hindrances, present knowledge will not be challenged or broadened.
  4. While working, do not hope or pray not to encounter obstacles.  Without obstacles, your willpower and focus will not strengthen.
  5. In life, do not hope or pray to achieve success easily.  With easy success, arrogance can easily arise.
  6. When interacting with others, do not hope or pray to gain personal profit.  With the hope for personal gain, the spiritual nature of the encounter is diminished.
  7. While speaking with others, do not hope or pray to not be disagreed with.  Without disagreement, feelings of self-righteousness can easily arise.
  8. While helping others, do not hope or pray to be paid.  With the hope of remuneration, the act of helping others will not be pure.
  9. If you see personal profit in an action, do not participate in it.  Even minimal participation will stir up desires and passions.
  10. When wrongly accused, do not attempt to to exonerate yourself.  Attempting to defend yourself will create needless anger and animosity and only perpetuate the endless cycle of karma.

I bet everyone can identify with at least one of these warnings.  I know I do.  🙂

Enjoy!

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Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

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