Padmasambhava

Padmasambhava

(circa 755 -797)

Padmasambhava introduced Buddhist doctrine into Tibet and exorcised its demons. He is one of the historically identifiable founders of Tibetan Buddhism and of the Lamas, as Tibetan Buddhist monks are generally called.

Padmasamhhava (literally, born of the Lotus) was born in the extreme north-west of India, now Pakistan. He was already an accredited Tantric master at the Nalanda university when he was called to Tibet by King Thn-Srong Detsan (740-786). Buddhism had doubtlessly arrived in Tibet one century before, during the reign of the first king, Tri-srong Detsan (c.610-649) who had married two Buddhist princesses, one from Nepal, and the other from China.

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Tenzin Gyatso – The Fourteenth Dalai Lama


Ocean of Compassion

The Fourteenth Dalai Lama

Born: 1935
Residence: Dharamsala, India
Birth Name: Tenzin Gyatso

Dalai Lama: “teacher whose wisdom is as great as the ocean”; an honorary title bestowed by the Mongolian prince Altan Khan on the third head of the Gelukpa school in 1578. This close connection with Mongolia brought the school of Tsongkhapa into a position of political preeminence, which with the fifth dalai lama (1617-82) was consolidated into rulership over all of Tibet. Since this time, the Dalai Lama has been regarded as an incarnation of Avalokiteshvara, and the Panchen Lama has been venerated as his spiritual representative. Each Dalai Lama is considered a reincarnation (tulku) of the preceding Dalai Lamas. The Dalai Lamas not only fulfilled their role as heads of state. Among them are also great scholars and poets filled with joie de vivre, like the sixth Dalai Lama. The fourteenth Dalai
Lama, in exile since 1959, combines in his person a spiritual and political authority that is still binding for the Tibetan people.

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Hakuin Zenji also known as Hakuin Ekaku (1686 1769)

Hakuin Zenji also known as Hakuin Ekaku (1686 1769)
Reformer of Zen Buddhism
What is the sound of one hand clapping?

Image of Hakuin asking What is the sound of one hand clapping?

What is the sound of one hand clapping?

So asked Hakuin, the author of this well known Zen koan. Hakuin was one of the most important Japanese Zen masters of the Rinzai school. He is often referred to as the father of modern Rinzai Zen, since he gave new impetus to the Rinzai school which had been gradually deteriorating since the 14th century and reformed it. He systematized koan training and emphasized once again the importance of zazen (sitting in absorption) the practice of which had been more and more eclipsed by intellectual preoccupation with Zen writings.

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Ibn-al-Arabi

Ibn-al-Arabi
born: 1165, Murcia, Spain
obit: Damascus 1240 Abu Bakr Muhammad

 

Muhyi al-Din Ibn al-Arabi was born in Murcia into a very pious and cultured milieu. When he was seven, he and his family moved to Seville, the capital of the Almohades Empire which extended all over North Africa. At 16, having studied with Andalusian spiritual leaders, he‘ entered on the path’. He was so cultured that at an early age he was awarded an important administrative post; it was also at this time that he met and married a young woman whom he considered to be the spiritual ideal. But a grave illness which brought with it powerful visions led him to give up his career and his possessions in order to practise asceticism in strict seclusion. Several long years of pilgrimage followed, during which Ibn’Arabi met the greatest mystics in Spain and the Mahgreb, where he spent some time before a vision compelled him to go to the East. In 1201-02 he travelled to Cairo, Jerusalem, and finally to Mecca, where he was welcomed into the home of an eminent Persian sheikh and his sister.

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al-Ghazali: The Seven Obstacles

The Seven Obstacles

The following brief description of the path that the devotee travels in his journey to Jannah (Paradise) is taken from the introduction of Imam al-Ghazali’s Minhaj al-‘Abidin ila Jannati Rabb al-‘Alamin (The Path that the Devotee has to traverse in order to reach the Garden of the Lord of the Universe). This path to Jannah is no more than the devotee’s actual worship and servitude of Allah, the Almighty. However, in undertaking this journey the devotee is confronted with Seven Obstacles which he needs to overcome if he is to accomplish his goal and reach his destination. These Seven Obstacles are:

  1. the Obstacle of Knowledge
  2. the Obstacle of Repentance
  3. the Obstacle of the Barriers
  4. the Obstacle of the Four Distractions
  5. the Obstacle of the Forces
  6. the Obstacle of the Nullifiers
  7. the Obstacle of Praise and Gratitude

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al-Ghazali

The Alchemist of Happiness

Algazel, better known as al-Ghazali, was born Abu Hamid Ibn Muhammad Ibn Muhammad al-Tusi al-Shafi’i al-Ghazali in 1058 A.D. in Khorasan, Irandad, in the west of what is now called Iran. He was an Islamic theologian, philosopher, and mystic. He is considered one of the greatest theologians in Islam. Al-Ghazali made a significant philosophical contribution at a time which was important for the continuing legitimate existence of the sufi component of Islam.

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Baba’s Letter to his brother, 1947

“To all who are devoted to Me:

My dear Ones! I received the communication that you wrote and sent; I found in it the surging floods of doubts and anxiety. Let Me tell you that it is impossible to plumb the hearts and discover the nature of Jnanis, Yogis, ascetics, saints, sages and the like. People are endowed with a variety of characteristics and mental attitudes so that each one judges according to his own angle. talks and argues in the light of his own nature. But we have to stick to our own path, our own wisdom, our own resolution without getting affected by popular appraisal. As the proverb says, It is only the fruit-laden tree that receives the shower of stones from passers-by. The good always provoke the bad into calumny; the bad always provoke the good into derision. This is the nature of this world. One must be surprised if such things do not happen.

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Spiritual Intelligence

p>This page is an overview of and introduction to Spiritual Intelligence. The spiritual focus here is not on any one particular religion or belief system, rather, on practical elements which are common to spiritual activity by humans.

All intelligence is problem solving skill. Intelligence(s) in all its forms, are used to solve problems we encounter.

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Love without Limits

Love without Limits
Conversations with a Spiritual Master

(The Master speaks in blue.)

Master, what is then the spiritual path, learning of discipline, of meditation, bows, studying of books, life choices and their consequences?

This is the path leading to recollecting everything of who you are and at the same time creating a strong channel for a fuller, external expression of the Truth.

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First Steps to Love

First Steps to Love
Conversations with a Spiritual Master

Daniel Ostoja shares the narrative of his life journey, in particular, his spiritual experiences from the days of his youth. As a young man, Daniel read
of meditation and practised it himself, right from reading about it in a book.

My meditation did not have any religious character at that time. I used to merely sit with my legs crossed, focusing my mind on a place inside of my stomach and controlled my breath, waiting until my thoughts became quiet. It was very difficult at the beginning, but at the beginning everything is difficult and I was aware of this. I used to sit in zazen three times a day, for half an hour each time, and sometimes also for thirty minutes before going to bed.

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