-Do not believe in anything (simply) because you have heard it.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations. Do not believe in anything because it is spoken and rumoured by many. Do not believe in anything (simply) because it is found written in your religious books. Do not believe in anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders. But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all then accept it and live up to it.
-We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
Speak or act with an impure mind
And trouble will follow you
As the Wheel follows the ox that draws the cart.
We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world. Speak or act with a pure mind And happiness will follow you. As your shadow, unshakeable.
-Thus shall ye think of all this fleeting world; A star at dawn, a bubble in a stream, a flash of lightning in a summer cloud, a flickering lamp, a phantom, and a dream.
Answer #5. The Buddha Dharma is inclusive, not exclusive. Our aim is to benefit all sentient beings, without exception. To help all sentient beings, including ourselves, to have happiness and its causes, and to be free from suffering and it's causes, and to attain unsurpassed supreme enlightenment as swiftly as possible.
The Buddha Dharma transcends colour, texture, flavour, language, culture, tradition and nationality. It is for everyone, everywhere and at any time.
This is especially evident in the practise of the Four Immeasurable's (Brahma Vihara) of universal loving kindness (metta), universal compassion (karuna), empathetic joy (mudita) and equanimity or non-bias (uppekkha).
May you all be happy and free from suffering, and attain unsurpassed supreme enlightenment as swiftly as possible.
Please see more words of inspiration below from the great Indian master Shantideva's Bodhicaryavatara (The Way of the Bodhisattva) (From the chapter on 'Commitment').
From verse 7 to 10:
'.....By the virtue I have just amassed,
May all the pain of every living being
Be wholly scattered and destroyed.
For all those ailing in the world,
Until their every sickness has been healed,
May I myself become for them
The doctor, nurse and medicine itself.
Raining down a flood of food and drink,
May I dispel the ills of thirst and famine.
And in the ages marked by scarcity and want,
May I myself appear as drink and sustenance.
For sentient beings, poor and destitute,
May I become a treasure ever plentiful,
And lie before them closely in their reach,
A varied source of all that they might need.....'
From verse 18 to 22:
'.....May I be a guard for those who are protectorless,
A guide for those who journey the road,
For those who wish to go across the water,
May I be a boat, a raft, a bridge.
May I be an isle for those who yearn for landfall,
And a lamp for those who long for light;
For those who need a resting place, a bed;
For all who need a servant, may I be their slave.
May I be the wishing jewel, the vase of plenty,
A word of power and the supreme healing;
May I be the tree of miracles,
And for every being the abundant cow.
Like the earth and the pervading elements,
Enduring as the sky itself endures,
For boundless multitudes of living beings,
May I be their ground and sustenance.
Thus for everything that lives,
As far as are the limits of the sky,
May I provide their livelihood and nourishment
Until they pass beyond the bonds of suffering.....'