We continue our series looking at THE GREATS AMONG THE GREAT BODHISATTVAS, inspired by the wonderful book FACES OF COMPASSION by Taigen Dan Leighton, highly recommended ...
http://www.wisdompubs.org/pages/display ... n=&image=1
... today looking at Shakyamuni ... the man who became "THE BUDDHA".
Now, most folks usually think of Shakyamuni as "THE BUDDHA" ... but before he was "THE BUDDHA" Shakyamuni was a young seeker, in search of the key to human suffering to benefit all sentient beings, not himself alone. That seeking, that "Vow to Save All Sentient Beings" is precisely what makes a Bodhisattva a "Bodhisattva".
There are legendary tales as well, the hundreds of "Jataka Tales" and others, of past lives of the Buddha ... past lives as man, woman, fish and animals too, in which he gave of himself time and again to benefit others ... often sacrificing his very life to save others. These tales, merely legend or not, show how Shakyamuni came to symbolize selfless, compassionate giving as a Bodhisattva.
But I would insist that, even after becoming "THE BUDDHA", Shakyamuni as "THE BODHISATTVA" still remained ... for Gautama Buddha did not stay sitting under that Bodhi Tree complacent in his own peace and discovery ... nor did he vanish immediately from this world ... but rose up to walk across India, teaching, serving and helping others for the next 40 years ... helping others even now.
Today’s Sit-A-Long video follows at this link. Remember: recording ends soon after the beginning bells; a sitting time of 20 to 35 minutes is recommended.