Making Effort

and Pureland Buddhism in the Philippines


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PAST – Skype Lecture: The Law of Cause and Effect (July 13, 2017 | Thursday)

Buddhist teacher Frank will give a live lesson on Buddhism via Skype on the topic: The Law of Cause and Effect.

There is no effect that happens without a cause; and wherever there is a cause, an effect will always follow. To put it simply, seeds not planted will never grow; seeds planted will never fail to grow.

Buddhism, in particular, teaches us in detail about the matter that concerns us the most, which is the relationship between the cause and the effect of our fate or destiny.

Learn about the Law from the beginning in this talk.

Lecture is free and newcomers are welcome.

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

When: July 13, 2017 | 8:00pm –  9:00pm (Philippine Time)

LISTEN // PRACTICE


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The Law of Cause and Effect 2 (CONDITION)

The Law of Cause and Effect is actually The Law of Cause, Condition and Effect (Read here first about The Law of Cause and Effect for its detailed discussion). It states that for every Cause (action or deed) – regardless of its nature, there will be a corresponding inescapable Effect (result), and that our Own Causes will only give us our Own Effects.

Good Fate/Destiny < Good Actions | Bad Fate/Destiny < Bad Actions | Own Fate/Destiny < Own Actions

The CONDITION is what happens in between the Cause and Effect. This cannot eliminate the Effect but only affect the manner it is manifested. So the complete chart will be like something below:

Law of Cause Condition Effect

Take for example the cherry blossoms, they blossom every spring but during winter you see nothing but withered-looking trees. The tree has that energy or ability (CAUSE) to produce flowers (EFFECT) but this depends on the weather (CONDITION).

In our lives, our parents and partners are examples of Conditions that brings out the Effect of a past Cause. Living as a cruel and violent person in the past may birth us into an unloving and poor family but there are many such families out there why were you born into that specific family?

CAUSE: Living as a cruel and violent person in the past
EFFECT: Born into an unloving and poor family
CONDITION: Your parents / family

You could have been born to different parents where the Bad Effect is worse. Maybe aside from being an unloving and poor family they also live in a country at war.

The Law of Cause (,Condition) and Effect is also called The Law of Karma. It is inescapable. No Condition will make us escape our Karma, it only affects the manner of its manifestation.


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Nothing is Unfair

You have probably heard about the Law of Cause and Effect or the Law of Karma, if not, you can read this article: The Law of Cause and Effect for a longer explanation on what it is. To simplify, the Law states that our actions will always give us a result that could manifest in an instant or could take years or even different lifetimes to show.  The Law’s 3 principles are:

  • Good cause (action or deed) brings Good effects (results)
  • Bad cause (action or deed) brings Bad effects (results)
  • Own cause (action or deed) brings Own effects (results)

Going by the definition of the Law and it’s principles we can say that we deserve what is coming our way. This is because all our actions have repercussions and it’s up to us to if we want it to be good or bad. Again:

  • Good cause (action or deed) brings Good effects (results)
  • Bad cause (action or deed) brings Bad effects (results)
  • Own cause (action or deed) brings Own effects (results)

Also from this we can say that the Law is a way of balancing the world. It makes it fair. As much as we detest how “unfair” life in this world is, it is actually fair because of the Law of Cause and Effect. When good things happen to us, it’s easy for us to claim that this is because of something good that we did. We deserved it. However, when bad things happen it becomes difficult to accept. We find reasons why and the reason is always something else but us. You may be shaking your head now in disbelief and thinking, “Are you trying to say that we should just accept everything that happens to us?” Actually, yes and no.  Yes, because when things already happen, is there really something we can do to change it? We can only avoid it from getting worse and it from happening again. And no, because do we really want to accept that our fate is set to receive the same results over and over? We still have control on the results we will receive in the future and that is by being conscious of the things we do in the present. If we do Good deeds now, we get Good results in the future. Bad results for Bad deeds and regardless of the nature of the deed it will always be our Own deed brings our Own results.

So, because of the Law everything is fair. Of course, there will be times when we would feel things are unfair. We should ask ourselves then, of all the beings in the world why were we placed in that specific situation? Which is easier to accept? Something that we have done in the past gave the result of placing us in that specific situation or we are just randomly there, placed at the wrong place at the wrong time? Isn’t it better that we have control on things that will happen to us rather than just accepting that things happen and we have no influence on it?

Thinking of “unfairness” breeds hate, envy and anger and these are not good or healthy emotions to have. If we continue thinking this way then we will be trapped in its cycle of negativity. If we live by the Law of Cause and Effect, we can accept that life is fair. It will not be an easy task (and it will prod many sensitive situations) but it can give us the chance to develop a calmer and more positive outlook than if we think life is unfair.

Len
18 May 2017

April 9, 2017 Lecture/Meetup of Pureland Buddhism Center of the Philippines


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PAST – Lecture/Meetup: The Law of Karma in Buddhism (Apr. 9, 2017)

A continuation from last week’s foundation of Buddhism topic. This time the Law of Karma will be discussed in detail. The lecturer will be teacher Masaki.

Where: The Columns Ayala Avenue Tower 1, Makati City, Philippines
When: April 9, 2017 | 3:30pm – 4:30pm

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

LISTEN // PRACTICE

Photo Credit: Pureland Buddhism Center of the Philippines

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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.

 

April 4, 2017 Lecture/Meetup of Pureland Buddhism Center of the Philippines


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PAST – Lecture/Meetup: The Foundation of Buddhism (Apr. 2, 2017)

A lecture about the foundation of Buddhism – the law of Karma by teacher Masaki. This is a great opportunity to learn about the wisdom of Buddha.

Where: The Columns Ayala Avenue Tower 1, Makati City, Philippines
When: April 2, 2017 | 2:00pm – 3:30pm

LISTEN // PRACTICE

Photo Credit: Pureland Buddhism Center of the Philippines

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