DHARMA IN EVERYDAY LIFE
- PURPOSE OF
- FOLLOWING BUDDHA
By Nhat Quan
think that following Buddhism is eating, dressing, and living
an ascetic life. If you think like that, you understand
Buddhism according to your personal concept or understand it
from real-life experience, or define Buddhism in some external
form, but you refuse to understand Buddhism according to
In life, you
go to find a happy and prosperous life, by trying to learn a
certain knowledge such as medicine, literature, or a certain
profession. The general purpose is to find a career to respond
to material life and to nourish this small body. The reason is
that this body needs to eat and drink to maintain it. But
eating and sleeping is not enough, because there is reason,
thought, emotion, or generally, a spiritual life. So it's not
unusual to learn to follow the Buddha's teachings, or in other
words, to study the Buddha's teachings. The goal is to balance
both material and spiritual lives, and ultimately to overcome
the sea of suffering, and live in equality, enlightenment, and
1- In terms of
equality, it means that there is no longer class distinction
in a happy and harmonious lifestyle. Because according to the
Buddha's teachings, all sentient beings have the same
potential to become a Buddha, as long as they know how to
practice body and mind in accordance with the Dharma.
2- In terms of
Enlightenment, it means that you understand and realizes the
three insights, the three dharma seals, and eliminate the
three delusions. Broadly speaking, you already know:
clearly see your life and that of others in the future.
clearly see your past life and that of others in the past.
- Third, be
free of your afflictions and suffering in the present.
understand life as impermanent, ever-moving, without
permanence and cessation.
understand that you and things in space are not-self, there is
no entity of the self of people and things, but a relationship
of dependent origination.
understand that life is imperfect and suffering.
overcome ignorance or, no longer have the instinct of blind
transform misleading views and thoughts, no longer see knowing
and wrong thoughts.
3- In terms of
liberation, it means that there is no longer desire and
defilement like the jungle. Know that liberation or nirvana is
possible in this present life and after you have died.
Furthermore, in liberation or nirvana, there are four
characteristics. That is:
- True peace,
- True of
terms, it is true eternalism, true bliss, true self, and true
So, in order
to achieve the above-mentioned goals of Buddhism, you need to
choose and practice the method that best suits your foundation
and level, although Vietnam has many different cultivation
methods such as Zen Buddhism, Pure Land Buddhism, and
Mantrayana or Mystic doctrines. However, the following method
can be applied to all of you, not only in Vietnam but also
around the world. That's the Tam of no smuggling and
compassion to save suffering.
training is a practice that is no longer confused with
suffering, and no longer superstitious, focusing on three main
subjects, which are: Studying precepts, learning
concentration, and learning wisdom. That is, virtue, fitness
mind, and intellect, to neutralize lust, anger, and delusion
to save suffering in order to perform financial gifts,
fearless gifts, and Dharma gifts. That is the specific
practice of doing charity work for society, health, and
education in terms of material things, in order to improve
poverty, disease, and illiteracy for the poor.
mind to study and follow the Buddha is to seek to become a
Buddha. Therefore, if you want to become a Buddha, you must
study and practice the Buddha's conduct. To do so you must
keep the five precepts. You come to Buddhism to want to go
beyond the ordinary life of the world to achieve truth,
goodness, and beauty. If you come to Buddhism without
overcoming the mediocrity of life, still continue to drift
with dull temperaments, worse than ordinary people, it will
only make you more miserable, not a religious person.
Therefore, you must have the right spirit of cultivation. That
means cultivating good karma, generating bodhicitta, deeply
believing in cause and effect, diligently practicing, and
trying to preserve virtue to be worthy of the name of a
virtuous practitioner, in order to bring happiness to you,
your family, and society.
refuge in the Buddha, practice according to the Buddha,
practice the practice of chanting, recite the Buddha's name,
studying the sutras, meditating, practicing the Way... have
very clear purposes. According to the Madhyamagama Sutra, the
Buddha taught three main purposes:
1. Want to
means mastering yourself and conquering lust, anger, and
malice. Thus, subduing yourself means gaining freedom. Freedom
is the eternal desire of mankind, an essential need after the
need to eat, but the nature of freedom is not the same. The
more people seek freedom outside, the more freedom they lose,
so someone said:
- Man has only
the freedom to choose to lose his freedom.
The concept of
loss of freedom in Buddhism is bondage, being entangled in
lust, anger, and harm. So self-mastery, self-mastery of your
lust instincts, self-conquest is self-imposed freedom.
further taught that Buddhists have the ability to
self-regulate themselves, even if they seek profit, fame,
career, and love building... when those things are failed,
changed, or destroyed, betrayal... he is still safe, stable,
free from sorrow, grief, lamentation, madness, suicide... That
is the first purpose of Buddhism.
2. Want to
achieve purity and peace:
Peace of mind
depends on your thoughts and feelings. If your mind is
dominated by worry, sadness, and fear, then you cannot have
peace. Peace and happiness go together. Whether or not
happiness depends on a stable psychological attitude. For
example, if you are healthy and wealthy, but your heart is
boiling with lust or hatred, you cannot have peace and
happiness. A person full of fame and success, whose heart is
dominated by anxiety, insecurity, and fear, cannot be happy.
taught that a person who achieves purity and peace is one who
when unpleasant things come when worries and fears come, they
are not dominated and entangled by them. And a person who is
not dominated by thoughts of lust, anger, and ill will, who
attains such pure states, has no greater happiness than peace
of mind. This is the second goal of Buddhism.
3- Want to
attain liberation and nirvana.
This is the
ultimate goal of all Buddhists: End all suffering, escape from
birth and death, samsara, and attain perfect wisdom. Real and
lasting suffering is ignorance; True and eternal happiness is
the cessation of ignorance. That is to the shore of
enlightenment, which is the cessation of ignorance, the birth
That goal can
be divided into two parts: near goal and distant goal. Near is
the attainment of a life of freedom and happiness, far is the
attainment of the eternal peace of Nirvana. The Buddha's
teachings help people control and control themselves. This is
the first step, the foundation of all virtues, and all
progress, thereby realizing purity and peace of mind,
transforming the entire life that once brought insecurity into
happiness. Saying the near and far purposes are easy to
understand, in fact, the two are one. Realizing freedom and
self-control leads to peace and happiness. Having peace and
happiness leads to Nirvana. Nirvana is realized in this life.
A society in
which everyone knows how to pursue the above three goals and
knows how to observe the five precepts is the most exemplary
and civilized society. If you want to be like that, you must
study with good teachers or friends who have experience in
practicing and learning the Buddha's transcendental conduct.
The Buddha is the perfect person representing the all-truth,
all-good, and all-beautiful ethics.
human morality can there be compassion, wisdom, justice, and
true happiness in the family. Society is truly civilized in
both aspects: material and spiritual. Thus, a person who wants
to learn the Buddha's teachings and virtues must first take
refuge in the Three Jewels and observe the five precepts. The
Buddhist then diligently cultivates virtue and learns the
practices of liberation, by improving all activities in life,
Wholeheartedly believe in the Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha.
Protecting the throne of the Three Jewels, so that the
Buddha's Dharma lasts, often recite Buddha's name to keep the
observe the precepts that you have received to avoid causing
evil karma and retribution later.
Practice a period of fasting and vegetarianism to cultivate
compassion, reduce aggressiveness, and protect health and less
4- Get rid of
the aggressive, greedy, stealing, and lying characters to
become gentle, upright, and sincere person.
bad habits such as Gambling, smoking, wasteful eating, etc.
must be kept thoroughly in dressing, sleeping, thinking, and
practicing a simple lifestyle. Reduce petty needs, unnecessary
material things, no fuss, no eccentricities, no luxury, no
6- Do not be
lazy to rely on others but must be diligent and wise,
diligently study with independent will, self-reliance,
patience, and endurance to overcome all hardships and
must have a sense of responsibility, the work must be gentle,
neat, clean, and tidy.
gestures, and words must always be gentle, modest, not
conceited, and contemptuous.
oneself, it is hard to control the false mind, for people, it
is generously tolerant and enthusiastic to help and advise
people around. All are towards the good path, cultivating
morality, promoting wisdom, and abandoning superstitious
study the scriptures so that you can learn to understand and
properly practice the Buddha's Dharma.
month, you should go to the temple for at least two days of
repentance, in order to do away with the sins of the past, to
repent of the old mistakes, and to avoid leaving the following
the chants in common rituals so that you can blend them in
when chanting together.
spend a day or two at the temple to study contemplation or
practice the Pure Land Meditation to learn higher teachings
and practice a simple meditative lifestyle for a whole day in
the fresh and pure air. This allows the soul to enjoy moments
of lightness and peace that cannot be found in the world.
It can be said
that studying and practicing the above things has made a
personal revolution, giving up evil rules and improving evil
for good. Worthy to be a sincere and true Buddhist step by
step towards liberation.
purpose of Buddhist teaching is to teach you to be a Buddha
and a Bodhisattva. Buddhist teaching, from beginning to end,
is actually three things:
1- The first
thing is to teach people to abandon evil and cultivate good,
2- The second
thing is to teach those who break the delusion to turn to
3- The third
thing is to teach people to turn mortals into saints.
saint, is, someone who understands the truth of the universe
and lives, and understands the reason of cause and effect,
then this person is called a saint. The Buddha is the
enlightened one, while the Saint is the one who knows, but
having knowledge will lead to enlightenment not far away.
cannot be enlightened because of the veiled defilements,
delusions, discriminations, and attachments that prevent you
from becoming enlightened. Buddha and Bodhisattva teach you to
let go of delusions, discrimination, and attachments, then you
will definitely be enlightened immediately. Partial
renunciation has partial enlightenment, two-part renunciation
has two-part enlightenment, these are obstacles. Enlightenment
is wisdom, a virtue inherent in your own nature, not from
Buddhism is like choosing this profession in society. You must
have a professional spirit, promote and spread to people in
the monastic society. The Buddha's education is a
multicultural social education, it is not divided by race,
region, or religion. To guide equality, it is also necessary
to take yourself as a model, because the broad masses of
society make a good example. The spirit of Buddhist study is
to guide everyone to the point of consummation so that
everyone can break their delusion and become enlightened,
everyone can become a saint and become a sage, completely
without obstacles and without harming anyone. Based on the
sincere heart, the Buddhists call it the Bodhi mind, the real
heart towards people, sincerely accepting everything. Others
use kusala citta towards you, you use kusala citta towards
others. Other people use an unwholesome mind toward you, you
still use good mind towards others. Others believe you, you
trust people; Other people don't believe you, but you still
That's why the
ancients used to say, you must have sincere intentions, good
intentions, pure love for people and animals, give freely and
unconditionally, respect elders, and help all sentient beings.
This is the Buddha's behavior, the Buddha's principle of
dealing with people and accepting things. You have to study
Whether or not
you can outperform others is entirely in your own mind. If you
are willing to sacrifice yourself, you can transcend. The
delusions, distinctions, attachments; Fame and benefit, five
pleasures, and Six dusts must be removed for clean. So, as a
Buddhist, you must work to overcome your own habitual
afflictions. You have to fix yourself to do what needs to be
done. When the mind is pure, the mind is concentrated, it is
not difficult. The difficulty is because of the many
expectations, still the many desires. This is the great
obstacle, which not only hinders your practice but also leads
you to the three evil paths, leading to hell. Therefore,
cravings and fancies must be abandoned to be clean. Life must
be accorded with conditions, determined not to run under
objects that are conditions.
and aspiration of Buddhist learners is only to hope that all
sentient beings are in harmony with each other and live in
harmony. But all sentient beings are different, so the
retribution is not the same. These differences from their
present and past karma are not the same. So from above the
effect you can see the cause, from above the cause you can see
the effect, then you already have wisdom. If this is to
achieve the real goal, politics cannot do it. If politics can
achieve this goal, then Shakyamuni Buddha with the status of a
prince, can become a king. He knows politics is unattainable.
Nor can force solve this problem. You see in the sutras,
Buddha Shakyamuni when he was young, was very skilled in
martial arts, he could be a general, he could be a marshal,
but he gave up everything. He knew that this matter could not
be achieved by force, not even economics and science, and
technology could do it. The only method that can get a good
effect is to only guide sentient beings to cultivate virtue,
so Shakyamuni Buddha chose this work of social education,
wholeheartedly engaged in educational work in a multicultural
society. Buddha Shakyamuni is such a person, you need to be
clearly aware. His great ideal and will is to help all
sentient beings leave suffering and enjoy happiness, love each
other, and live in harmony.
In short, the
purpose of practicing following the Buddha is to initiate your
thoughts in your language and your creations. So that you can
use a pure mind. Pure love for people. Pure is the mental
conduct of helping others to break the delusion of
enlightenment, completely implementing it into the present
life. This is both merit and truth. You can use this merit to
dedicate to your parents, brothers, and relatives. If your
parents have passed away, this merit can help them improve
their dignity. If your parents are unhappy and fall in a bad
way, this merit can help them to be reborn. This is the true
transcendence, it is not necessary to invite monks and nuns to
chant sutras to be able to be transcended. Doing this is a
necessary belief of Buddhists, only supporting this prayer
20%, most of the rest is completely on your actual conduct.
you practice and follow the Buddha in the present and in the
future, you have been, are, and will be the one who is walking
on the path of cultivating body and mind and improving social
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