Realising the Buddha Nature and Changing Destiny

Posted on July 15, 2008

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This morning, my roommate and I were heading to work when we crossed a butcher’s shop. She said, “The stench is so bad at this point na?” I replied, “Oh yes, it must be because it is a butcher’s shop.”

I was reminded of an incident from Jesus’ life. Once, a believer came up to Jesus and asked, “Master, is it okay to eat meat?” The Master said, “My child, worry not what goes into your mouth, but worry about what comes out of it!”

It is so strange that an enlightened and non-violent soul like Buddha died of meat poisoning. Or is it? Buddha preached that his disciples will be bhikshus like him, meaning they will go from home to home asking for alms and feed themselves thus. Not only is it breaking down each element of pride in a person, but it also allows each alms-giver a chance to generate good karma. Buddha insisted on non-violence and hence people think that vegetarianism was imposed. But it is not so. Buddha said that whatever be given to the bhikshus in alms must be consumed. Neither is the bhikshu allowed to reject non-vegetarian food to maintain vegetarianism, nor is she/he to allow the killing of an animal so that she/he is fed. So it happened, that a villager called Cunda had given some meat dish to Buddha. It is to be understood that one gives a beggar food which has been prepared on previous days. The meat happened to be rotten and Buddha fell ill immediately. The most amazing thing is, that even at the hour of death, he said, “Please tell Cunda it is not his fault! In fact he will be blessed for he has provided the last meal for me!” Buddha left his physical body only after asking his disciples if they wanted to ask him anything before he died.

In changing one’s destiny, good karma plays a very important role. Most often, when I am faced with a problem, I tend to cry out, “Oh! But I did nothing wrong. What could I have done so bad that I am being punished like this?” The trick is to realise that one may not do anything wrong, but one may tend to be selfish, looking out only for one’s own progress or needs. When we look around us, we tend to see people who help others become rich, are probably the richest in fact – Bill Gates, Narayan Murthy, Michael Dell, etc to name a few. The two important tenets of inviting good luck are (1) Avoid being mean or bad. (2) Go ahead and be really nice. Even if you happen to be in trouble later, you will have many people to share your burden.

One thing that I have recognised over the last many months of practicing meditation is the importance of developing the power to learn and move on constantly. Imagine, if one is walking down a road, and one trips and falls, what is she/he likely to do? The answer seems obvious, get up, dust their clothes and keep walking. Yes, it is obvious. Would any of us actually sit in the middle of the road and curse the stone and the road and the day itself or one’s own foolishness? Maybe a handful people on earth would do that, but most of us would just walk on. So why do we not have this attitude towards any pain or problem that life brings forth?

Every fall has the capacity of teaching us something – for e.g. Be careful when you walk on the road, today it was a stone, it could have been a fast-moving vehicle that hit you! Or if we are on a bumpy road, then we need to be careful because the chance of falling is relatively higher than when you are on a smoother road, or simply, don’t take this road another time. Slowly, we even learn to determine which roads will be better to get us to our destination.

If we simply tried this out with our life’s problems, we would be all sorted. I have decided to change my destiny and attract good luck. The few good things that I have begun doing are –

— At the end of each day count all the mistakes I have made, and mentally ask myself, “What could I have done better, irrespective of how wrong someone else was (according to me)?” and learn and erase the memory of this event completely. This is important, for guilt is a powerful emotion that can lead to self-persecution or persecution of others. Forgiveness is a powerful tool. It helps in severing ties with unpleasant situations and emotions. It is equally important to forgive one’s own mistakes as it is to forgive others. Also, asking forgiveness from others is important – breaks down our pride and helps in forgiving oneself.

— Reiterate my purpose in life. I have decided never to let go of my goal. I want to be consumed by it, so that each moment, I am acting in a way that will contribute to its achievement. My goal is to achieve complete equilibrium to be unaffected largely by the tumult in the outside environment. My goal is to be peaceful and achieve divine oneness with all. So each time there is a compelling situation for me to get angry and rage like a mad woman, I choose not to – for it is taking me a step closer to my goal.

— And I tell myself that I am a being of divine intelligence, divine love and divine power – I want to exude joy and positivity which transcends through all my endeavours and through that of others as well.

So be it…SO BE IT…So it is.

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