Wednesday 27 June 2012

The axe or a donation...

The axe or a donation...

So to the new financial year
Do we think this year will be any different from the last or the one before or even the one before that?

It may take twenty years before we change our ways

Many years ago there were two friends and they did everything together
They lived next door to each other
They sat next to each-other at school and when they left school they got a job at the same shop
They bought the business together and had no time for women or to get married
They even went on holidays together
They travelled to smart foreign cities
They had no time for cultivation or even to think of the Buddha
They gave no donations to any charity of went to any Temple
On one of their many trips they came to an inn and asked the owner for food and lodging
The owner asked if they were Buddhists and if they would like vegetarian food
The reply came sharply and they said they wanted meat and drink and be quick and they didn't bother with such rubbish and didn't want to know the Buddha
The owner left them sitting at a table waiting for service
All of a sudden the owner came rushing back into the dining room looking most fierce with a large axe in his hand
He shouted at the two that he would kill them for their money and jewels and if they knew any prayers now is the time to pray
They fell to their knees and cried
Help us Lord Buddha
Save us Lord Buddha
We will dedicate our lives to you Lord Buddha just don't let this monster kill us
We are too young to die
The owner hearing their prayers put down his axe and smiled
I am sorry to frighten you so
Just relax now
I am not going to kill you
Let me tell you a story

Twenty years ago Buddhists Monks visited here with a famous Master
They were on their way to open the great Temple that stands not far from here
The Master became very ill whilst he was here with a serious heart disorder
The Monks asked if they could stay whilst the Master recovered
Unfortunately he didn't recover and just before he died he asked to see me
He told me that in the future two non believers would come to this inn and when they did I was to threaten to kill them with an axe
The Master then passed away before he could say more
You are the only two that have asked to stay and are the only non believers we have seen here in twenty years
So I threatened you as the Master asked

We have seen the light the two friends said
The Buddha has saved us
We will now go to the Temple and share our wealth and dedicate our lives to the Buddha

We don't know what caused the Master to say his final words to a stranger about killing two friends in the distant future

We do know that twenty years after the Master passed the Temple needed a new roof as a storm had damaged it and we do know that all the Temples money had been used to help the local villagers from starving after the storms

We do know that the two helped the Temple with a new roof and replaced all the money used to feed the locals

We do know that Heaven and Karma work in mysterious ways

Our thoughts at this time must be with the unfortunate and our spare coins used to benefit others
We don't know if in twenty years time we will be threatened by an inn keeper with an axe


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The axe or a donation......

Tuesday 26 June 2012


I notice our obsession with how we look.The various physical blemishes and conditions that afflict us and cause us to suffer.
The Buddha tells us;
"a person sees all kinds of blemishes except for their own."

There is a story of a doctor, who, known for his generosity, was also prone to blow his own trumpet.
One day he was driving and saw a Monk walking by.
He stopped to offer a ride.
As they travelled together,
the doctor started to show off.
"You know Bhante I see a lot of patients who I don't charge, as they can't afford my fees."
"I also do that" replied the Monk.
Maybe he means he gives people material help,
the doctor thought.
"I also give post operative care free, even though I don't have the time."
"I also do that", said the Monk.
So it went that every time the doctor praised himself, the Monk answered,
"I also do that."
The doctor couldn't take it any more and asked;
"I don't understand, you are not a doctor, how can you do these things?"
"Oh I don't do those things,
I meant that I also only talk about my own good qualities."

The Buddha teaches us that a person is like a mirror,
when we find ourselves noticing faults in others, it is because they exist within ourselves.
It is behoven on us to realize that when we see a fault in somebody else, it is only because we need to work on that very fault within ourselves.
We tend not to notice our own faults, except in others.

The whole world is a mirror designed to show us how we can work on ourselves and our deficiencies.
Let us look in the mirror and see our own shortcomings. Then it will become a lot easier to be tolerant and more understanding of others.


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Most of us have suffered because we trusted someone, or something,only to be disappointed, when things didn't turn out the way we expected them to.

A lady named June told me the following story;

The decision to adopt was never as issue, but I wanted twins.
I didn't know why, I just had it in my head that The Divine
would supply twins.
We were meant to have twins, so we bought twin cots,
a twin tandem pram, doubled up on clothes and we even got two windup toys that played music.
The number two just wouldn't leave my thoughts.
A few months later the adoption agency called us to go to China to see a twelve month old baby girl who had been abandoned outside a factory near Shanghai.
We loved her, and of course,
all thoughts of twins were put out of my head.
We gave away the tandem pram, the second cot, and named the little girl Mia.
Somehow it all just seemed right.
I couldn't part with the second wind up toy that made music.
I joined an Internet forum that helped us cope as parents of adopted children.
I shared Mia's progress with strangers.
I noticed a lady from Florida that was talking about her baby, the same age as our Mia and she had used the same agency.
We started to talk by email and discovered her baby was found at the same factory,
at the same time.
When we exchanged photos, the similarities were amazing.
There were too many things the same, so we decided to have DNA tests.
After a wait of two months,
the answer,of course, the girls were twins.
We organized a trip to Florida and when they met they hugged.
It was as though they had not been parted.
We gave her the other windup toy.
They also had one more thing in common, the mother from Florida had also named her daughter Mia.

"Please Divine One help me to trust those little thoughts I know come from You !"


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Monday 25 June 2012

In memory of Linda...

In memory of Linda...
This story comes from a friend who loved dolls.

"My sister-inlaw was really a friend more than related just by marriage.
Her name was Linda.
I shared everything with Linda, but for one thing.
I couldn't understand Linda's passion for porcelain dolls.
She had about 150 of them.
The dolls were on shelves in a room that was designed just for the dolls.
I admired her for the way she kept them so beautifully.
Sadly, Linda became very ill and after a very short time,
she lost her battle with cancer.
Her brother gave the dolls to charity to be sold.
I was so sad that I hadn't asked for just one doll to remember Linda, a keepsafe,
a memory.
Linda's death was still fresh in my mind and my family took me to a local fair.
They thought the trip would help the healing.
At the fair there was a row of marquees selling various goods. One caught my eye, amongst the snow globes and toys, there was a porcelain doll.
I gasped, it looked just like the ones Linda had.
Pale colour skin, blue eyes,
a beautiful dress, a bonnet covering blond curly hair.
I had to have it.
I thought, everything is so expensive and I only had $20 with me, it was only $19.95.
Of course I bought the doll, and when I got home, I placed the doll carefully on the dresser in my bedroom.
As I re-arranged the dolls dress I noticed a name on the inside of the leg.
It was Linda.
My memory was complete.

"Thank you Divine One,
you care enough to ease the pain of my loss."


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Thursday 21 June 2012

Dharma. Clear path--

Dharma. Clear path-- It is now over fifteen years since I started on my journey to become more enlightened and cultivated. One of the greatest lessons I have learnt is the lesson of destiny . So do I have a clear path? I love my life and everything I do. I love everyone I come into contact with. It's a choice, a decision. We start our short existence on the graph of life and it ends before we have even learnt that we do have a destiny to fulfill. There's a choice how we live, how we behave, a choice that has a karmic outcome. We all have a decision to make regarding our destiny. Our lives are similar to when we build a house. We start with a strong foundation, we then build walls and rooms. We start placing stuff inside. After many years our house collects so much rubbish, the house fall in on it's self, exactly like what is happening to most of us right now. How can we discover our potential when we have so much rubbish surrounding us. Let me tell you a story; A famous yogi from Tibet, Ddromponpa saw a young man circling a stupa chanting. The Yogi said, "circling a stupa is well and good, but wouldn't it be better if you practiced dharma." The young man thought perhaps he means this is too simple a practice for me and I'd be better off studying texts. Later the yogi saw him reading holy books and said. "Reading texts is well and good, but wouldn't it be better to practice dharma?" What should I do the young man thought, maybe meditate. Again the yogi said when he saw the young man sitting in meditation, "wouldn't it be better if you practiced dharma?" The young man was getting agitated . "What do you mean practice dharma ?" The great yogi replied... " Turn your mind away from attachment to the worldly life. You can go round holy objects, go to church, a monastery or a temple and meditate in some corner doing nothing. Unless you change your mental attitude, your old habits of attachment, your old games you learnt from parents, you won't find peace, your practice will be ineffective." "if you don't change your mind, no matter how many external things you do, you'll never progress along your spiritual path." "The cause of agitation will remain with you." " It's our mental attitude that determines whether our actions become the path to inner realization and liberation, or to suffering and confusion." "Dharma practise is the method for totally releasing attachment." "One dharma is to understand that we have a destiny to fulfill." " To choose our own destiny, or to be steered by others suffering greatly on the way to death. Our own life is in the balance right now." Do I live an ordinary life in an extraordinary way, or do I stumble from day to day suffering and in pain? Make a choice , make a decision and create destiny. It is only when we practice dharma, that the path is clear. Nathan

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Thursday 7 June 2012

I have been given a book as a present by my friend Paolo.

I have been given a book as a present by my friend Paolo.
The book was a perfect choice as in the 350 pages were a few lines that that stood out for me.
The writer Robert Kiyosaki and his sister Buddhist Nun Emi wrote Rich Brother, Rich Sister, to show two different paths to spirituality, happiness and money.
He writes "who, we are born to be, is to discover our path, and discover our life's journey, not life's destination."
Robert attended church as a young man and the preacher said the following, which impressed me ;
"We are born human beings. This means we are both humans and beings.
Humans have limits.
Beings are limitless.
Humans get old,beings evolve. Humans die, beings do not, humans need jobs whilst beings have missions."

We are fortunate to be able to receive a message from an author we have never met, and be affected by it.

Thanks Paolo

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Sunday 3 June 2012


The photo looks out the corner suite of Rydges hotel overlooking the Adelaide cemetery.
I was editing a dharma yesterday that I wrote a year ago about death.
It was 6.30am and quite dark and as I wrote what "death" said to the king, the entire wall of curtains, including the rod, came crashing down.
I am not superstitious,
Here is the dharma....

   Kings Dream--
One night, in a dream,
 the king saw death.
He was so afraid, he asked death
 "Why are you in my dream,
 why are you frightening me?"
Death said" I have come to tell you that tomorrow at sunset I will come to get you, so get ready.
 It's out of compassion I tell you,
so you can have time to prepare."
The king was so shocked 
that in the middle of the night ,
he called his ministers and asked them to find people who could interpret the dream .
 The king asked them what could be done as time is short and maybe the dream is true.
So the dream interpreters and scholars came with big books,and started to discuss, dispute and argue.
 The sun was already up and the king was getting more worried by the minute.
An old  trusted servant came to the king and whispered 
"don't be foolish your majesty,
these scolars will never find the answer, they will argue for ever.
I suggest you leave the palace since death visited you here,
if you are not here, then death may not find you.
By sunset you can be far away.
The logic seemed right.
So he left the palace.
The king had a fast horse and he travelled  far, and by sunset he had reached a beautiful tree.
He patted the horse and said
 'you did well and we have come so far, death will never find us here.
As he was patting his horse, the king felt somebody standing behind him .
He turned and there was the death laughing 
"Why are you laughing,"asked the king?
Death said "I was worried because you were destined to die under this tree and I wondered how you would get here in time.
Your horse did well 
I came to you in your dream as  I wanted you to escape from the palace.
You have come so far and only one day left, your horse did well."

Wherever we go death is waiting for us, in all directions, in all places.
We know this is unavoidable, but the mind starts to spin some stupid ways to avoid death.
We want our lives to last forever,
in perfect health, with lots of money.

 Our prayers go out to all misguided souls who do not follow the way of natural occurrence.
We must realise we are guarded and guided.
The more we practice and cultivate, the happier and more successful our lives become and death does not enter our thoughts.

Thanks to our practice all is well    


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