General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
[N.B. This is the forum that was called ‘Exploring Buddhism’. The new name simply describes it better.]
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A friend of mine posted this image on facebook today, and it made me think a few different things about the practice.
Sokushinbutsu (即身仏) were Buddhist monks or priests who caused their own deaths in a way that resulted in their mummification. This practice reportedly took place almost exclusively in northern Japan around Yamagata Prefecture. It is believed that many hundreds of monks tried, but only 24 such mummifications have been discovered to date.
Today, the practice is not advocated or practiced by any Buddhist sect, and is in fact banned in Japan.
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There is no limit to what people can do once they have grasped on an idea. Misunderstanding the Dharma is very easy. Understanding correctly the Dharma is also very easy. What you choose is what matters, that is your karma.
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?
2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.
3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.
4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.
1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"