Sunday, June 29, 2008

Can prayers help? (Comment)

Occasionally, I go to the Boddhi tree at the Mahindarama Temple in Penang, to "pray". The approach to my prayers is very different from the Christian way. I will first pay homage to the Buddha, and then recite some simple Buddhist verses in Pali mainly sharing goodwill with the unseen kind beings (devas) and in return "hope" that they will protect me and help me lessen my worldly problems. Below was my comment for the questioner:

First, to be sure, Buddhists do not subscribe to the existence of a supreme being who wields absolute control over us. Buddhists also do not depend on the personal intervention of the Buddha, for he is no longer in this plane of existence. Buddhists follow and practise the Buddha's teachings which will accordingly bring good results and protection for them, as sure as the heater will work when you plug and switch on the switch. We don't have to pray to Faraday to provide us with electric current; we only need to apply his knowledge to gain benefits. (Michael Faraday was responsible for the discovery of electricity.) This is Buddhism.

As far as ultimate salvation is concerned, Buddhists do not rely on anyone because no one can do it for us. We rely on ourselves with the guiding principles of the Buddha. Buddhists are masters of themselves and the navigators of their own destinies.

There are however, certain worldly assistance that certain beings can help us, if we "communicate" with them through our goodwill and requests. We believe that we must first be worthy of help. We have to be persons of good character, not harming others, and are kind to others as well as to ourselves. There are certain beings existing in higher planes of existence who have certain worldly "powers". They are the ones who can sometimes answer our prayers, so to say. I follow the Theravada tradition, and the above is our belief.

A comment I would like to add is that certain schools of Buddhism believe that by chanting or praying to certain Buddhas or deities; they will not only answer their prayers but also help them gain final salvation.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi there,

metta to all of you who happen to visit this site.

allow me to share something very interesting with all of u.

In buddhism, everything is contain within one universal mind, but each of us are of different bodies. When we make a prayer or wish, this wish is resonate in this space of indra net.

yesterday, one of my friends expressed his wish to see another friend, surprising , this wish is met.This incident make me thinks that everything is energy, we make connection with another person by thinking of him or her.

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