Making Effort

and Pureland Buddhism in the Philippines

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PAST – Lecture/Meetup: What is True Happiness? (Aug. 05, 2017 | Saturday)

Buddhist teacher Maeda from Japan will conduct a a lecture on True Happiness

Lecture is free and newcomers are welcome.

Where: The Columns Ayala Avenue Tower 1, Makati City, Philippines

When:Aug. 05, 2017 | 2:00pm – 4:00pm

Please send a message to  0998-566-2533 if you would like to join.


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PAST – Skype Lecture: Attaining True and Lasting Happiness (July 15, 2017 | Saturday)

Buddhist teacher Alice will give a live lesson on Buddhism via Skype on the topic: Attaining True and Lasting Happiness

Lecture is free and newcomers are welcome.

Where: SKYPE (Message Skype ID: frank.costelloe)

When: July 15, 2017 | 1:00pm –  2:00pm (Philippine Time)


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The deLight in Buddhism

The very first memory I have of Buddhism was as a kid. My cousin told me that monks turn the soil carefully when burying their dead so they won’t disturb the earthworms. Fast forward into my adulthood, I saw the movie “Shaolin.” My admiration for the portrayal of the monks’ discipline and compassion in that movie led me to my first real commitment with Buddhism.

I started reading online articles regarding Buddhism and I was fine with it. Buddhism has a way of making one feel good while learning it and it made me feel that way. However, I was aimless despite the vast resources I found online. Then I met my Buddhist teacher Frank, and later on teacher Sumie.

This is when I discovered that having someone to guide you through your learning magnifies the feeling of goodness and turns it to happiness. The feeling felt surreal at first and I was quite taken aback because of its intensity. I began to wonder, “Why am I this happy?”, “Is it normal to be this happy?” At that time nothing has really changed in me, the things that make me mad, sad, or insecure are still there, and I was aware of that, only that they seemed to be put in the background. They seem to feel less, they seem to feel distant. And it hit me, I have just started listening to Buddhism and I already feel this good? What if I listen more? What if more people were to hear this? These were my thoughts at the start that I still have up to this moment.

Buddhism simply marveled me with its sensibility. How the teachings give us the authority to our actions. No concept of fear, judgment, or punishment only owning up to our deeds and the consequences it will make. It made me feel a relevant aspect of my existence. It is a practical philosophy to follow to give more meaning to our lives and to make living less problematic. The Law of Cause and Effect and the Six Good Deeds alone are good habits to start and keep in our lives, even to those who do not wish to pursue Buddhism. If we all have these as guiding principles in our lives, we would all be living in harmony and life struggles will be more bearable. Buddhism also gifted us the purpose of life, an age old question that we, and all the other humans before us, ask ourselves. It brings peace to know that we don’t live just to survive and then die. We all want purpose and I think even sceptics will agree to that.

I have only been listening to the teachings for a few months and I know that there are still a lot of lessons that I will discover but despite that I have already realized the unselfish promise of Master Shinran and Sakyamuni Buddha to share the wisdom of Amida Buddha. I intend to follow and keep that promise too.

March 2017

image for The Purpose of LIfe and the Two Kinds of Happiness

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What is our purpose in life? (and the 2 categories of Happiness)

The question answered many times over but has never been really answered.  Maybe because each person has their own idea of what their purpose in life is. This question will all come to us. Early to some and late for others but it will come.

Buddhism teaches that the purpose of life is to be happy. Pretty simple, ey? Is it? We may even doubt the sensibility of this statement to some extent. But if we look beyond the simplicity of this sentence we will learn that it is telling us something deeper. Isn’t it that everything we do, we do it so we can feel happy – feel better, be satisfied, be fulfilled, feel contented, be free of worries, be free of troubles, be free of doubts, etc… I suspect there is anyone who would make effort to do things to make them feel miserable. Happiness is a means of living and we need it in our lives.

Sakyamuni Buddha taught that there are 2 categories of Happiness. They are listed below with a description of each

2 Categories of Happiness

1. Relative Happiness

This is the kind of happiness that we need to live, a means of living. It has 3 characteristics. It is temporary, no completion, and is destroyed by death. This kind of happiness stems from human desire (the need to acquire or do something), and human desire is limitless – money, partner, hobbies, good health, entertainment, the list goes on. However, when the novelty wears off the burse of pleasure that was so intense at the beginning will start to fade away. Like in the law of diminishing marginal utility, everything that we do wears off with repetition. Everything is temporary. Our youthful face fades overtime, our strong body will eventually become frail – this is the reality of life. The things that once brought us joy will lose its glow. That’s why it’s better to look at things in the long term because then we know when we get there, it has already diminished

2. Absolute Happiness

This kind of happiness is our purpose for living. This is a kind of happiness will never collapse and will never abandon us. This can be achieved by listening and practicing the teachings of Buddhism. The Law of Cause and Effect and The Six Good Deeds is a good place to start to learn the wisdom of Buddhism.


March 13, 2017 Lecture/Meetup of Pureland Buddhism Center of the Philippines

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PAST – Lecture/Meetup: Buddhism and True Happiness (Mar. 19, 2017)

A lecture about the basic of Buddhism by Teacher Masaki. This is a great opportunity to learn about the wisdom of Buddha. Lecture is free and new comers are welcome. Ask questions and share your ideas, everyone would love to hear it.

When: 2017 March 19 // 2:00pm – 3:30pm
Where: The Columns Ayala Avenue Tower 1, Makati

Please send a message to  0998-566-2533 if you would like to join.


Photo Credit: Filipino Pureland Buddhism | Masaki Usumoto| En-En Usumoto

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