A Humble Yarn of a Novice Monk at the Indiana Buddhist Temple
Feb10

A Humble Yarn of a Novice Monk at the Indiana Buddhist Temple

Submitted to Living Fort Wayne by the Indiana Buddhist Temple Have you ever thought of dedicating your life towards enlightenment? In this part of the world, this is not a concept that most of us are raised with. For many of us, there comes a point where the only solution to our spiritual dilemma is to ordain as a monastic. For those who are unfamiliar with many of the spiritual paths that are currently available to us, Buddhism is one path that is neatly laid out so that if you walk on the noble eight fold path, you may see the benefits of this spiritual path in this very lifetime. Buddhism is definitely not the only path that can lead to enlightenment but it is one of the most organized spiritual paths that is open to anyone who is interested. There are many other systems available; although some require the assistance of a master, Guru or some sort of esoteric practice that is only available to those who are accepted into that particular system. With Buddhism today, one can learn a technique of meditation from a meditation teacher and practice at home. Even with limited experience, one can still make some progress and develop a more balanced mind when it comes to dealing with the day to day turmoil that all of us face. At a certain point, we will need further instruction. Some will continue doing long retreats of several weeks to several months. There are even many individuals today who go on long retreats of several years without ordaining as a monastic. So why would someone decide to become a monastic and give up the householder life? When ordaining as a monk or nun, you are basically giving yourself over to the Buddha (The teachings that the Buddha left us), Dharma and the Sangha (Holy order of monks and nuns). Dharma is a Pali (a language that was spoken during the time of the Buddha) word that basically means the order of the universe. You can also say that the Dharma means the natural laws of the universe. By taking the robes of a monastic, you are dedicating your life to enlightenment. As a monastic, you are taking the vow to follow the precepts which are given to you during ordination. As a lay Buddhist, it is very common to already follow the five precepts which are: non-harm towards all living beings; not taking anything that isn’t given to you; not having illegal (harmful) sexual relations; not lying (which on a higher level could also be interpreted to not slandering, gossiping or speaking harshly towards others) and...

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How the Indiana Buddhist Temple Has Helped Me
Oct31

How the Indiana Buddhist Temple Has Helped Me

Article submitted by Indiana Buddhist Temple, written by Jonathan Buckingham As I was heading out the door of the Indiana Buddhist Temple, feeling peaceful and calm, I was asked to write an essay, on how the temple has helped me. I jumped with excitement inside and was pleased to do so. The temple has supported me in many ways already, but the four things I noticed most is the care of the monks, the sense of community, the benefits of the teachings, and the chance to retreat. With honor in my mind I am proud to explain how the temple has done this. Just a couple of kind words from another person can lighten up the whole day.  I will never forget the questions asked from one of the monks. With a soft, gentle tone in his voice, he asked me, “Are you happy?”  Knowing that someone is interested in my well-being, the question lifted me with a warm smile. I notice the monks at the temple are always speaking in this kind way to everyone. I enjoy just sitting back and listening to them.  It teaches me a feeling of acceptance for myself and others. When a community shows me love, I want to give them love back. I see this cycle as the monks giving compassion to the community and the community wanting to give compassion back to the monks, and on and on. It’s a beautiful cycle! When I go to the temple people are always offering me things: “Please sit,” “Would you like to join use?” “Yes, please rest,” or “Please, come and eat.”  When I interact with people at the temple, I learn more how to do this with everyone I meet. It shows me how giving compassion to another person can go a long way. I get great joy in learning to have a calm mind.  I have been doing meditation on my own for a little while now.  Yet, I can tell my meditation is getting better going to the temple. The temple offers regular group meditation sessions.  One of these sessions I enjoyed was the Loving-Kindness Mediation during the last retreat. The meditation started with the monk helping everyone to become calm. He would say things like, “take a deep breath” or, “feel the joy viewing something pleasant.” As I listened, my body and mind started to become calm. Within a period of time, he would start saying more uplifting words like, “see how much love is inside you,” and “you are a confident person”. When I was in this very relaxed state with someone repeating kind words the love I...

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Indiana Buddhist Temple – Living Mindfully
May06

Indiana Buddhist Temple – Living Mindfully

This article was written by Bhante Devananda at the Indiana Buddhist Temple. Indiana Buddhist Temple is a meditation learning center located in Fort Wayne vicinity, Indiana. In June 28, 2003, the temple was founded by Venerable Thalangama Devananda (Bhante Devananda). Bhante always emphasizes that the temple is open to all religious beliefs, cultures and backgrounds. Bhante Devananda is the Abbot of Indiana Buddhist Temple. The temple is designated as a spiritual place to find peace, contentment, loving kindness, and compassion. Learning Buddhism to us is a path of self-discovery and education on life on how to live mindfully. Living mindfully is profound knowledge that comes by gradual trainings, gradual practices & gradual progresses. Improving oneself first, will eventually improve everything else, but it requires a great deal of patience, self-discipline, loving-kindness, compassion, and facing the insight that will inevitably surface. Discussing about practical matters, the Dhamma (Dharma = the teaching of the Buddha) mentioned strategies of living mindfully. The first is diligence, focused efforts in everything you undertake. Most goals are achievable by consistent efforts, such as going to school and doing well. Rewards are to those who persevere. Everyone should make the best effort in everything one undertakes. The most important part is to be kind with yourself regardless of the results. The second is common senses financial management. With limited resources, we need to mindfully manage our assets built with our efforts by practicing intelligent financial management. Providing a financial safety net for the future is important for peaceful mind now and later. What you earn with efforts should be dispensed mindfully. This encompasses concepts of living within one’s means and saving part of earnings for a rainy day. With wealth acquired in harmless ways, one divides such wealth: the first portion is used for one’s needs. The second portion is spent on business needs. The third portion is also spent on advancing proper livelihood. The fourth portion goes into savings for times of need. The third is sustainment of good companionships and avoidance of negative relationships. A dear companion is one who sees all matters in terms of safeguarding your best interests. It is one who gives what is hard to give. One does what is hard to do. One endures what is hard to endure. One reveals their secrets to you. One keeps your secrets. When misfortunes strike, one stays by your side and is driven by compassion and loving kindness, watching over you unwearyingly. When you’re down, one gives you courage. A companion endowed with these seven qualities is worth companionship. So Buddhism is not all focusing exclusively on nirvana and transcendence, but a prescription...

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