Meditation is participatory observation.
What you are looking at responds to
the process of looking.
What you are looking at is you,
and what you see
depends on how you look.
Bhante Henepola Gunaratana
If we view the world’s religions from the widest possible viewpoint and examine their ultimate goal, we find that all of the major world religions, whether Christianity or Islam, Hinduism or Buddhism, are dedicated to the achievement of permanent human happiness. They are all directed toward that goal. All religions emphasize the fact that the true follower must be honest and gentle, in other words, that a truly religious person must always strive to be a better human being. To this end, the different world religions teach different doctrines which will help transform the person. In this regard, all religions are the same, there is no conflict. This is something we must emphasize. We must consider the question of religious diversity from this viewpoint. And when we do, we find no conflict. …It is a wonderful thing to have variety. It is an expression of individuality; it is a personal thing. Likewise, the variety of the different world religious philosophies is a very useful and beautiful thing.
Answers: Discussions with Western Buddhists
The basic principles and precepts of all true religions are very pure. What you see as impure is simply the inability of those who adhere to them. Ven. Gyatrul Rinpoche from Meditation, Transformation, and Dream Yoga
All the spiritual teachers of humanity have told us the same thing, that the purpose of life on earth is to achieve union with our fundamental, enlightened nature. It says in the Upanishads: “There is the path of wisdom and the path of ignorance. They are far apart and lead to different ends. . . . Abiding in the midst of ignorance, thinking themselves wise and learned, fools go aimlessly hither and thither like the blind led by the blind. What lies beyond life shines not to those who are childish, or careless, or deluded by wealth.”
Sogyal Rinpoche from Glimpse of the Day
From what is dear, grief is born, from what is dear, fear is born. For someone freed from what is dear there is no grief — so why fear?
From what is loved, grief is born, from what is loved, fear is born. For someone freed from what is loved, there is no grief — so why fear?
From delight, grief is born, from delight, fear is born. For someone freed from delight there is no grief — so why fear?
From sensuality, grief is born, from sensuality, fear is born. For someone freed from sensuality there is no grief — so why fear?
From craving, grief is born, from craving, fear is born. For someone freed from craving there is no grief — so why fear?
There is a Buddhist practice in which one imagines giving joy and the source of all joy to other people, thereby removing all their suffering. Though of course we cannot change their situation, I do feel that in some cases, through a genuine sense of caring and compassion, through our sharing in their plight, our attitude can help alleviate their suffering, if only mentally. However, the main point of this practice is to increase our inner strength and courage. I have chosen a few lines that I feel would be acceptable to people of all faiths, and even to those with no spiritual belief. When reading these lines, if you are a religious practitioner, you can reflect upon the divine form that you worship. Then, while reciting these verses, make the commitment to enhance your spiritual values. If you are not religious, you can reflect upon the fact that, fundamentally, all beings are equal to you in their wish for happiness and their desire to overcome suffering. Recognizing this, you make a pledge to develop a good heart. It is most important that we have a warm heart. As long as we are part of human society, it is very important to be a kind, warm-hearted person.
May the poor find wealth,
Those weak with sorrow find joy.
May the forlorn find new hope,
Constant happiness and prosperity.
May the frightened cease to be afraid,
And those bound be free.
May the weak find power,
And may their hearts join in friendship.