Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ordinary mind produces ordinary karma

Today marks the first of 14 days when the Buddha performed miracles, such as opening up of heaven and hell for all to witness, simultaneous issuance of fire and water from his body, etc. It is a tremendous event according to the Buddhist calendar. Different tradition celebrates it on different days but as per the Tibetan calendar, it is celebrated from tomorrow onwards which coincides with the 2nd new moon. Normally Buddhists celebrate it by reading the scriptures, making offerings of fruits or flowers, releasing of animals meant to be killed for food, being a vegetarian for at least one day in the 14-day period, making a monetary donation, donating blood, reciting mantras, think of something wrong we have done in the past and repenting it, making holy aspirations/ vows, etc. These are some suggestions. It is commonly believed that since the miracles are so great, the merits resulting from any good or bad deed will be multiplied manifold. So, don’t miss this opportunity to do something good. It may just help you in your present situation. You never know. And in doing these good deeds, we always dedicate it to all beings, and not just for ourselves. Remember to do it selflessly, i.e. saying, “I am doing this for the sake of all beings. May all beings benefit from this action!”

Some people may think that we can also do all the good deeds every day, or any other day instead of today. Yes, that is true but if something is done every day, or any other day, it becomes ordinary. That is because the mind does not think it as special anymore. It does not become an act done on a holy day. In that case, it becomes an ordinary act and ordinary mind will only produce ordinary karma. And any Buddhist practitioner will be stupid to brush aside the need for a huge load of positive karma.

In Tibetan, the celebration is called “Losar” or in English “Days of Miracles” and I want to wish you all a “HAPPY LOSAR” or “Losar Tashi Delek”!

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