What do Buddhists Worship?

What do Buddhists Worship?

Posted in the Buddhism Forum

Hello

New York, NY

#1 Dec 31, 2012
Buddhism is the only spiritual tradition which worships by practicing the Dhamma alone!

The Dhamma is Nibbana and the Noble Eightfold Path along with all the other Buddha's teachings and trainings.

The Dhamma is the source of all divinity. By practicing Dhamma we ourselves integrate the Dhamma in ourselves.

All other worship is idolatrous. So while Muslims worship a god named Allah, as some being out there, Sikhs the same, Christians worship the person of a Jew called Jesus and Jews worship the Elohim in who's image mankind is made, only Buddhists look to themselves-- have they done good deeds? Have they lied or stolen, or conducted sexual misconduct? Ah no, my divinity is intact!

After enlightenment the Buddha said,“Let me then honor and respect and dwell in dependence on this very Dhamma to which I have fully awakened.” Anguttara Nikaya 4.21

Since the Dhamma is a term for the all-inclusiveness of the teachings, the Buddha emphasized the importance of Dhamma:

“Remain with the Dhamma as an island, the Dhamma as your refuge, without anything else as a refuge.” Samyutta Nikaya 47.13 and also at Digha Nikaya 26.
Hello

New York, NY

#2 Dec 31, 2012
Sorry, correction -- The Dhamma leads to Nirvana.
Hello

New York, NY

#3 Jan 1, 2013
Observance of Buddhist Precepts, good works and charity outweigh prayers to deity or deitys.

Here are two Jatakas that state the power of integrity and observing Uposatha days-

Mugha Pakha Jataka
Once upon a time a king Kāsirāj& #257; ruled justly in Benares. He had sixteen thousand wives, but not one among them conceived either son or daughter. The citizens assembled as in the Kusa Jātaka 2, saying, "Our king has no son to keep up his line"; and they begged the king to pray for a son. The king commanded his sixteen thousand wives to pray for sons; but though they worshipped the moon and the other deities and prayed, they obtained none. Now his chief queen Candādevī, the daughter of the king of the Maddas, was devoted to good works, and he asked her also to pray for a son. So on the day of the full moon she took upon herself the Uposatha vows, and while lying on a little bed, as she reflected on her virtuous life, she made an Act of Truth in these terms, "If I have never broken the commandments, by the truth of this my protestation [2] may a son be borne to me." Through the power of her piety, Sakka's dwelling became hot. Sakka, having considered and ascertained the cause, said, "Candādev&#2 99; asks for a son, I will give her one."
Hello

New York, NY

#4 Jan 1, 2013
While others prayed to their gods, the Bodhisat prayed to no deity, but used his intellect and energy to save himself from a shipwreck--he always observed the Uposatha vows!

Maha Janak Jataka

There were seven caravans with their beasts 1 embarked on board; in seven days the ship made seven hundred leagues, but having gone too violently in its course it could not hold out:—its planks gave way, the water rose higher and higher,

the ship began to sink in the middle of the ocean while the crew wept and lamented and invoked their different gods. But the Great Being never wept nor lamented nor invoked any deities,

but knowing that the vessel was doomed he rubbed some sugar and ghee, and, having eaten his belly-full, he smeared his two clean garments with oil and put them tightly round him and stood leaning against the mast. When the vessel sank the mast stood upright. The crowd on board became food for the fishes and tortoises, and the water all round assumed the colour of blood; but the Great Being, standing on the mast, having determined the direction in which Mithilā lay, flew up from the top of the mast, and by his strength passing beyond the fishes and tortoises fell at the distance of 140 cubits from the ship.

That very day Polajanaka died. After that the Great Being crossed through the jewel-coloured waves, making his way like a mass of gold,[35] he passed a week as if it had been a day, and when he saw the shore again he washed his mouth with salt water 2 and kept the fast!
Hello

New York, NY

#5 Jan 1, 2013
In the Maha Janak Jataka, the Bodhisat told us to strive against all odds, than even the gods are with you:

"He who thinks there is nought to win and will not battle while he may,—
Be his the blame whate’er the loss,—’twas his faint heart that lost the day.
Men in this world devise their plans, and do their business as seems best,—
The plans may prosper or may fail,—the unknown future shows the rest.

Seest thou not, goddess, here to-day ’tis our own actions which decide;
Drowned are the others,—I am saved, and thou art standing by my side.

So I will ever do my best to fight through ocean to the shore;
While strength holds out I still will strive, nor yield till I can strive no more."
Hello

New York, NY

#6 Jan 1, 2013
So is Buddhism atheistic? No. Other religions are the tail wagging the dog-- believe in god or gods first and this gives morals.

In Buddhism, we are taught to train our minds in morality first, than the god(s) if there are any, automatically come to your side.

So Buddhism is morality first.
sangita

UK

#7 Jan 3, 2013
Hello wrote:
So is Buddhism atheistic? No. Other religions are the tail wagging the dog-- believe in god or gods first and this gives morals.
In Buddhism, we are taught to train our minds in morality first, than the god(s) if there are any, automatically come to your side.
So Buddhism is morality first.
good point, follow the dharma and if there are any gods or one god they will be on your side
Hello

New York, NY

#8 Jan 3, 2013
sangita wrote:
<quoted text>
good point, follow the dharma and if there are any gods or one god they will be on your side
Exactly.

Another way to look at it--Practice of Dharma makes one a deva or Devi, ie a human god due to purity.

Buddha described those who had faith in and consistently practiced Buddha's teachings and kept the precepts and holy days as Gods and Goddesses.

This is what makes the Sangha the 3rd Jewel and refuge.

Gods and Godesses naturally look for company amongst others like themselves.

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