Engaging the Heart
Buddhism is a path of transformation. This means that it is not enough to understand it intellectually. Following the Buddhist path means that we must engage the emotions and the imagination. To have that emotional engagement means having devotion or faith, and ritual is a way of directly engaging the emotions.
Buddhist rituals (known as pujas)usually consist of three main elements: recitation, chanting and the making of offerings. The verses recited are usually associated with the principal tenets and ideals of Buddhism; and they give expression to the spiritual aspiration which makes someone a Buddhist. Buddhists usually chant in either Pali or Sanskrit (two ancient Indian languages) and chanting is a way of forging an emotional connection with Buddhist ideals. Sometimes Buddhists chant mantras, symbolic representations of Enlightenment in sound form. Offerings usually consist of flowers, symbolising both beauty and impermanence; candles, symbolising the radiance of Enlightenment; and incense which pervades the air in the same way that a life lived ethically touches the world.
In 2018 we want to give added emphasis to puja. Look out for festival dates in the programme, and note that there’ll also be pujas each month, around the time of the full moon
Full Moon Pujas
6:45 pm to 8:30 pm
- Friday 2 March,
- Sunday 1 April, (4pm to 6pm)
- Monday 30 April,
- Thursday 28 June,
- Saturday 28 July,
Enter the realm of the imagination with the Sevenfold Puja, an inspiring text taken from a work by Shantideva, an eighth century Indian monk, known as the Bodhicaryavatara, or “Guide to the Bodhisattva’s way of life”. The puja (worship) consists of seven poetic verses, designed to lead you through various devotional moods, as well as mantras which evoke particular qualities of the Enlightened mind.
You can find the text for the Sevenfold here.
Suggested donation: $10 (waged) / $7 (low income)