Posted by Nanda (18.104.22.168) on April 24, 2000 at 23:57:42:
In Reply to: Didn't mean to start anything posted by Dannielle on April 24, 2000 at 22:36:34:
I do agree that having a teacher is very important in the practise. But when a teacher is not available... things can sometimes be very difficult. And i respect the effort that you have made.
You can set up a very simple shrine using a table. Just as long as it is above the floor. About waist to chest length would be preferable.
Usually people have a vase for flowers, a small bowl for oil ( for the light), a container for incense and a statue of a picture of the Buddha.
If there are any other devas you would like to place on the shrine. It would be better if the statues are arranged in a way that the Buddha's statue is the highest followered by the rest.
I advise you to use whatever that is availabe... I is okay if you do not have a shrine.. as long as the teachings are kept close to your heart. remember, the statues are a symbol of the Dhamma.... and the Buddha. Not got itself.
As for the prayers or puja. Usually, it depends on what type of Buddhism you practise. For Thevaradans, they start with homage,3 refuges, 5 precepts, praise of the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha before proceeding to anything else.
It is more or less the same with Mahayana and Vajrayana. I suggest that you develop you own way of chanting that you are comfortable with. But always have the homage, 3 refuges, praise of the Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha first.
If you were to reed through the sutras you will realise that they have a teaching or a meaning of how to cultivate you life. For mantras like OM Mani Padme Hum, it is more for blessing and purification. Just chant whatever you feel like chatning. And try a variety so that you do not get too bored. But if can learn one at a time and do it on alternate days so that you can really absorb the meaning of it all.
Good like. Bhavantu Sabba Manglam
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