Buddhism's  Message  to  You   -  No.1
Dai Butsu - Kamakura

The message of Buddhism is no more and no less than the down-to-earth success story of man. Of course, of the woman as well. It goes without saying. It is success here in this life and success in a religious or spiritual sense hereafter. This homo sapiens is undeniably declared to be capable of transcending all ills of life in the world by his own well-judged human endeavour. For this is what Siddhartha himself , as the son of a provincial Sakyan ruler of the Gautama clan, achieved in becoming the Fully Enlightened Buddha. He was thereafter called Sammâ Sambuddha. This was already six centuries before the birth of Christ.

Buddha's teaching unequivocally rejects the idea of a Supreme Divinity to whom the man in the world can go for succour, security and safety [ attâno loko M.N.11.68 ]. The Buddha also rejects the idea of such a Divinity who determines and guides the destiny of man [ anabhissaro loc.cit.]. This idea is expressed as the second among four major high-lighted axioms [ cattâro dhamm ' uddesâ ] or observations relating to the nature of the world. The others are : 1. The world is subject to constant change and is impermanent [upanîyati loko addhuvo ]. 3. One cannot claim possession of anything in the world. One leaves them all behind at death [ assako loko sabbam pahâya gamanîyam ]. 4. The world is insatiable in its needs. It is enslaved to greed [ ûno loko atitto tanhâ-dâso. loc.cit. ]. These were wisely re-invoked by the newly ordained young Ratthapâla, in reply to the ruler of the land who questioned him, as promptings which led him to a life of renunciation [ ibid.].

As the centuries passed by, in the eyes of his followers, the spiritual success of Siddhartha became overwhelmingly greater and greater. Before the dawn of the Christian era, the word Buddha and the person designated by the word had already broken through the boundaries of time and space in the world of thinking men of Asia.

His presence was made to be felt everywhere. He thus became the Buddha of Infinite Light or Amitâbha [ Amita + âbha ]. He is in every galaxy or Buddhaksetra. He exists everywhere. He was thus elevated to this glorified position of omnipresence by man by virtue of the greatness of his self-achieved triumph of transference from the mundane to the transcendental.

He is also believed to exist continuously through time. He thus became the Buddha of Infinite Life or Amitâyu [ Amita + âyu ] as well. Thus came about the genesis of the great Buddha [ Dai Butsu ] AMIDA or INFINITE of the later schools of Mahâyâna. This is the ascent to divinity as Buddha of the truly human personality of Gotama.

For you to dwell upon

001. It is one's own mind which gives direction to one's life, for success or failure. One needs keep constant vigil over it. A wholesome, loving mind alone entitles men and women in the world to inherit happiness. [ No power outside man bestows it upon him. ]. Wickedness of mind on the other hand, i. e. of thinking processes leading to evil words and evil deeds, always brings misery and disaster to mankind.[ Dhammapada vv. 1 & 2 ].