Tu Viện Quảng Đức105 Lynch Rd, Fawkner, Vic 3060. Australia. Tel: 9357 3544. quangduc@quangduc.com* Viện Chủ: TT Tâm Phương, Trụ Trì: TT Nguyên Tạng   

26. The Wheel of the Law

11/06/202009:09(Xem: 159)
26. The Wheel of the Law

dharma wheel 2
THE WHEEL OF THE LAW

Venerable Sumangalo

Usually, we call The Wheel of the Law by its Sanskrit name of Dharmacakra (pronounced Dharmachakra). This is only one of the many sings or symbols which are holy to Buddhists, because they stand for our religion and make us think of its teachings when we see any of these symbols. The lotus is the flower of Buddhism and the tree is the Bo or Bodhi tree. In Burma and northern Siam, the tail of the peacock is often used to represent the glory and beauty of the Dharma. The swastika is another sign much used by Buddhists. Sometimes we see three baskets used to represent the Buddhist teaching. Each of the three baskets stands for one of the three main divisions of the Buddhist holy scriptures. At other times we see a shining jewel used to represent our religion and, frequently, three jewels are used. The one jewel means Truth is like a beautiful gem. The Three Jewels stand for the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha.

So many symbols have been used by Buddhists to represent our religion that, finally, a sort of general agreement was reached that Buddhists of all the world would unite to accept the Dharmacakra as being the main sign or symbol of the Buddhist religion. The reason for choosing the wheel is that when Lord Buddha preached His first sermon in the Deer Park at Benares He is said to have “set the wheel of the law in motion.” We all know that a wheel is not of much use unless it is in motion. In fact when we think of a wheel we naturally think of motion. It is the same with our lives. We can go forward, make progress, or else we go backward. All life is motion, and there is no such thing as just standing still or marking time. If we follow the Wheel of Lord Buddha’s Law, then we are in motion towards happiness. The wheel is usually shown with eight spokes.

The Buddha described the wheel in this way: “The spokes of the wheel are the rules of pure conduct (the Eightfold Path), the equal length of all the spokes represent justice; wisdom is the tyre, the hub is thoughtfulness and the axle is the immovable truth.” Just as the cross is the generally accepted sign of Christians, the crescent of Muslims and the Star of David of the Jewish religion, even so, the Wheel of The Law is the one sign of our religion that is recognized all over the world, and we ought to use it more and more, until everyone knows the meaning of this holy symbol. If anyone wishes to wear a badge of the Buddhist religion in the form of a ring or pin or necklace, then the proper symbol to use is the Wheel of The Law. Anyone who wears such a symbol will be constantly reminded that the only true happiness comes from following the Law taught us by Lord Buddha.

 

THE DHARMACAKRA

When we see the Dharma-Wheel,
Shining with each turn,
We are thus reminded
Of our Lord’s concern;
Concern for every mortal,
That each might find release
From the round of sorrow,
Into perfect peace.

                     -S. R.

 

QUESTIONS

  1. What is another name for the Wheel of The Law?
  2. How many spokes are there in this wheel?
  3. What do these spokes mean?
  4. What is meant by the equal length of all the spokes?
  5. What does the tyre mean?
  6. What does the hub mean?
  7. What flower is a symbol of Buddhism?
  8. What is the name of the tree of Buddhism?
  9. Can you name some symbols used by other religions?
  10. Can we really stand still in life, or must we either go forward or backward?
Gửi ý kiến của bạn
Tắt
Telex
VNI
Tên của bạn
Email của bạn
15/02/201111:44(Xem: 1409)
“Who and what am I?” “Why do I exist?” Each of us, during some part of our life, wonders about these questions. While we’re aware of our own being, we don’t actually know how or why we came to be. Our existence poses a great mystery. Our view of who we are and why we’re here, consciously or unconsciously, affect every moment of our lives.
11/01/201106:05(Xem: 2053)
In the year 563B.C. on the border of modern day Nepal and India, a son was born to a chieftain of the Sakya clan. His name was Siddhartha Gotama and at the age of thirty-five, he attained, after six years of struggle and through his own insight, full enlightenment or Buddhahood. The term 'Buddha' is not a name of a god or an incarnation of a god, despite later Hindu claims to the contrary, but is a title for one who has realised through good conduct, mental cultivation, and wisdom the cause of life's vicissitudes and the way to overcome them. Buddhism is perhaps. unique amongst the world's religions in that it does not place reliance for salvation on some external power, such as a god or even a Buddha, but places the responsibility for life's frustrations squarely on the individual. The Buddha said:
04/01/201116:19(Xem: 1424)
Although different people have different views of what Buddhism is, I think it’s difficult to say, “Buddhism is this, therefore it should be like that.”
29/10/201010:25(Xem: 1885)
Buddhism has awakened considerable interest in the West, and there are many persons who enjoy positions of some note in western society who are either Buddhist...
20/09/201011:01(Xem: 1547)
What Is Buddhism? The Buddhist Society of Western Australia
31/08/201012:40(Xem: 1797)
Venerable Pannyavaro is an Australian Buddhist monk who has devoted his life to the meditational aspects of the Buddha's teachings. During his meditation training, he practiced under several meditation masters in Sri Lanka and Burma, including Venerable Sayadaw U Janaka of Chanmyay Meditation Centre, Rangoon, who is the foremost disciple of the renowned Burmese meditation master, the late Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw. Pannyavaro was involved in the beginnings of a number of the very early Buddhist communities in Australia. He later went to Thailand and received higher ordination at Wat Borvornivet in Bangkok under Venerable Phra Nyanasamvarva, the Sangha Raja of Thailand. Since 1974, he has from time to time studied and practised Vipassana meditation in most of the major Theravada Buddhist countries, including long periods of intensive practise with teachers at the Mahasi Sayadaw centres in Burma.
12/05/201015:36(Xem: 2291)
In the year 563B.C. on the border of modern day Nepal and India, a son was born to a chieftain of the Sakya clan. His name was Siddhartha Gotama and at the age of thirty-five, he attained, after six years of struggle and through his own insight, full enlightenment or Buddhahood. The term 'Buddha' is not a name of a god or an incarnation of a god, despite later Hindu claims to the contrary, but is a title for one who has realised through good conduct, mental cultivation, and wisdom the cause of life's vicissitudes and the way to overcome them. Buddhism is perhaps. unique amongst the world's religions in that it does not place reliance for salvation on some external power, such as a god or even a Buddha, but places the responsibility for life's frustrations squarely on the individual. The Buddha said:
12/05/201002:02(Xem: 5862)
The Pope, who managed to get the United Nations "International Year for Tolerance" off to a good start with the launch of his book, 'Crossing the Threshold of Hope' - Johnathan Cape, London, has demonstrated his abysmal ignorance and lack of understanding of Buddhism. Although he, with reservations, expresses guarded approval of Judaism, Hinduism and Islam, he considers Buddhism beyond the pale. He trots out the usual cliches about Buddhism being "negative" and pessimistic. What really worries him is the appeal Buddhism has to the 'Western' mind, especially to Catholics who see in Buddhist meditation techniques something that has been lost from the contemplative tradition of early Christianity. He provides no logical arguments against Buddhism but resorts to dogma to prove his point.
28/04/201007:26(Xem: 2232)
Buddhism is one of Australia’s fastest growing religions, having increased by 79% in the years 1996 to 2001, then numbering some 357,814 people, being 1.9% of the population. According to the 2001 Commonwealth Census, the majority of Buddhist live in New South Wales and Victoria. The largest concentration of Buddhists in Australia is in the Fairfield Local Government Area where 21.2% of the population registered as Buddhists.