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Treat all living beings with great respect
October 4th, 2012

illustration (attribution, if any possible, is at the end of the article)

Treat all living beings with great respect

The Laṅkāvatāra Sūtra talks about how, out of great compassion, the Buddha will appear in many different forms (using the skilful means).

Not only it appears in the form of a "friend of virtue," a master or a Dharma friend but it may also appear in the form of a drunkard or a gambler! Why? Because a drunkard or a gambler may not listen to a discourse given by a monk or a virtuous man, but (s)he might listen to a fellow drunkard or a fellow gambler…
So one practical lesson to learn is that one should treat all living beings with great respect. No matter how ignorant they appear to be, no matter how rude or crude they appear to be, treat them with utmost respect. You never know! They may be the manifestation of the Buddha. They may be bodhisattvas. Treat all with respect because you yourself have to be liberated.
Don't fool yourself that you're enlightened enough to recognise the Buddha when it appears, that'd just be plain arrogance. You never know! If what you experienced was the Buddha, it definitely is time for some humility… What does that say about you that it needed to appear in such a rude or crude form as the most effective way to get you to listen? Maybe it precisely says: "don't be arrogant, treat all living beings with great respect, listen to them (not in order to gain merits, but simply because that's the experience that requests a response here and now: pick a response that lets your buddha-nature flourish)!"

The Trikāya doctrine (the "three bodies") has been debated but, regardless one understands it either as a metaphor or as a truth, it leads to a wholesome take on life.

#Buddhism   #Dharma   #buddhistcircle  
[wiki: ]
[image from the video that caused a scandal in South Korea in May 2012
 cf. e.g. "South Korea Jogye Buddhist monks launch reforms" ]
[in relation to the scandal itself, one may always ponder who of the involved monks or the other gamblers was the bodhisattva delivering a lesson to the other… It would seem the lesson applied to the monks!
 cf. "South Korea's Buddhists monks tackle modern challenges"
Maybe the lesson was mutual though… ]