Thursday, September 2, 2010

Blessing the Buddha Image

Question : (Unedited)
My friend brought me back a beautiful Buddha from Singapore and when talking to one of the members of my Sangha she said i should have our teacher bless it.  I didn't want to feel stupid and ask what that entails.  So can you tell me.  Thanx,

My comment: 
Hi K...,

Thank you for asking me.

It depends on which tradition you are practising.  I shall comment as a Theravada follower.  Blessing the Buddha image, especially a new one for the home is more of a psychological ritual which makes one feel a sense of confidence in the Buddha image.  Whether there is any other benefit is subject to debate.  Very long time ago when I got my first Buddha image for my home, I got it "blessed" by the monk in the temple.  Some temples perform "all-night chanting" during auspicious occasions and devotees would bring along their Buddha images to be blessed throughout the night.  I feel this is a wholesome and meaningful ritual, and followers would definitely gain a psychological confidence.  Strictly (or wisely?) speaking, there is not a need to "bless" the Buddha image.  Come to think of it, does the Buddha image need us (or monks) to bless it?  Quite ironical, isn't it?

In the event if a Theravada monk were to perform the "blessing", what he would do is to recite some suttas while clasping the image and transferring his metta (wholesome vibration) to the image.

Hope this helps.

Smile from justinchoo :-)

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