Essentials of Faith: Buddhism

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Essentials of Faith: Buddhism (24:00)
Item# 36431

Buddhism holds that life and the physical world are illusions, transcended by emptying the mind and simplifying one’s life. In reality, Buddhism is complicated—no unified teaching exists. This program presents ways of articulating Buddhist thought from six straightforward and insightful practitioners who explain parallels and distinctions between Buddhist traditions. Commentators include Geshe Tashi Tsering of the Jamyang Buddhist Center, Ajahn Sumedho of Amaravti Monastery, Diana St. Ruth of the Golden Buddhist Center, singer-songwriter Sandie Shaw, designer Jeff Banks, and Jennie Peters of Soka Gakkai International in the United Kingdom. (24 minutes)

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Segments in this Video - (8)

1. Mindfulness and Enlightenment (03:11)
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Buddhism is a faith concerned with the present moment rather than the past or future; Buddhists seek enlightenment through the awakened state of consciousness called mindfulness. Practitioners describe Buddhism's impacts in their lives.

2. Buddhism's Roots (02:58)

Buddhism began in India 2,500 years ago. The first Buddha, the son of a prince, sacrificed a privileged lifestyle to seek wisdom. Buddhism absorbed a range of cultural influences as it gradually spread across Asia.

3. Schools of Buddhism and The Dalai Lama (02:21)

Different schools of Buddhist thought seek the same goal, enlightenment, through varied means. The current Dalai Lama is the spiritual and political leader of Tibetan Buddhists; now exiled from Tibet, the Dalai Lama has become an international statesman and peace campaigner.

4. Chanting (03:00)

Practitioners of a 13th century Japanese form of Buddhism chant to discover innate wisdom and achieve enlightenment. The practice helps one practitioner live well in this world and maintain a deep respect and hopefulness about life.

5. Fundamental Religious Questions (02:27)

Buddhism concentrates on the present moment and focuses on finding harmony with all living things throughout life. The Buddha taught that some fundamental questions about life and death are unanswerable.

6. Meditation (02:12)

Meditation is central to Buddhism. Meditation begins by stilling the mind and progresses to a place beyond thoughts where awareness occurs without thinking. Buddhists meditate to cultivate mindfulness, compassion, altruism, wisdom, and more.

7. The Buddhist Way of Life (03:00)

The Buddhist way of life follows the Eightfold Path, a set of values which derives from the Buddha's Four Noble Truths and provides a path to the end of suffering. Buddhists believe all actions taken in this life have consequences which might reach over into future lives.

8. Buddhist Experience (02:43)

Buddhism does not teach about the end of the world, its beginnings, or the existence of a creator. Buddhism is not a philosophy or belief system; it is characterized by investigation of experience in the present and a search for truth that transcends words.

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