The Buddha – the Embodiment of Peace
Upstream of the time over twenty-six centuries ago, a historical person in the flesh was born in the world about 624 BC in Lumbini of ancient India, present – day Nepal. That person, mainly Sakyamuni Buddha, King of peace, Messenger of peace, Embodiment of peace, has brought love, peacefulness and authentic happiness to this world.
According to philosophy of Brāhmaṇism as well as philosophies of other religions, human is considered in very low position, a Brāhma, Creator or God is considered in supreme position. Conversely, Buddhism always dignifies human in the topmost position, there is only human leisurely and steadily going on the way of joyful tranquility and happiness, apart from human, there is not a god having the ability to replace and undertake.
Person here is mainly person of high and good direction, that of transforming Karma, transformation from common person to holy person, from badness to goodness, from suffering to joyfulness and happiness, etc. We know Buddha first means awakened One and enlightened One. There is person leading a life of mindfulness and awareness in a place, in which there is an incarnate Buddha, that is, each of us, always dwelling in the light of loving-kindness, compassion and wisdom of World-Honoured One. This person can bing peace to living things and living beings.
When Siddhārtha Prince was born, he stepped on lotuses, his right finger was raised up to the sky, his left finger was raised down to the earth and said “All over the world, there is only Atman (Ego or Self) being uppermost, all living beings have their Buddha-nature.” According to Buddhist thought, first of all, Atman that indicates Human does not indicate a supreme God and a Brahma. Human that here is mainly Enlightened One, Sakyamuni Buddha, the embodiment of peace, overcomes all sorrow, misery and suffering, brings joyfulness, happiness and peace to the many. “A uniquely sentient being, an extraordinary person, appears in the world, out of peacefulness for the many, out of happiness for the many, out of peacefulness and happiness for gods and human beings, that being is mainly Sakyamuni Buddha.”
Learning the history of Buddhism, we know the Buddha’s life, which is the embodiment of love, that of peacefulness, that of freedom, is always connected closely with beings and the natural environment. The Buddha, who was born under a foot of sorrowless tree in Lumbini, obtained enlightenment under the root of Bodhi tree in Bodhgaya, preached the First Sermon (Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta) to five brothers of Kondanna in Deer park (Migadàya, Sarnath) and passed away under two Sala trees in Kusinàra.
Depending on the natural environment to protect, to nurture and to water the seeds of love into peaceful and safe mind of each of sentient being, Buddha, along with his disciples, who starts out to turn the Dharma Wheel around to spread it all over the world, brings flowers and fruits of love, insight and authentic peace not only to people, animals, but also to plants, trees, forests, mountains, soils, rocks, rivers, canals, ponds, lakes, the ocean, etc.
Indeed, when we have enough good conditions to learn and practice the teachings of the Buddha, we shall certainly live our joyful and happy life in every second every minute of our daily life. It is for the reason that in ancient times as well as in the present time, the Buddha and his disciples appear to propagate the Dharma and benefit sentient beings in a place, where there is joyfulness and peace for all living things and living beings on around the planet. In the Dhammapada, verse No. 98 stated:
"Whether in a village or in a mountain forest,
Or in a valley or on a high hill,
Wherever Arhat resides,
What countless delight there is!”
Arhat (holy One) who is a cultivated, enlightened and liberated practitioner leads a life of joyfulness and happiness, has the ability to dedicate flowers and fruits of peacefulness and happiness to all living things and living beings. Thus, we each are Arhat, we each are a future Buddha and we each are a tranquil practitioner in order to bring substances of love and understanding to the many. Carrying out so, we can contribute to building a realm of paradise and utmost bliss right in the world.
It is therefore that wherever Buddhism and its tenets are spread, wherever the Buddha and his disciples go to propagate the Dharma, there local people are always tranquil and peaceful for both their bodies and minds, both their families, borough, village and country. Since ancient Buddhism as well as modern Buddhism that never causes religious war and a drop of blood for anyone always brings peace to all insentient and sentient beings if everyone practices and applies rightly to the Buddha’s teachings into their daily life, peaceful tranquility and happiness will certainly be imbued and softly cool their bodies and minds.
Studying his teachings, we know during forty-five years of spreading the Dharma and saving sentient beings, the Buddha preached and taught his disciples many tenets, but all of his teachings embrace main purposes, that is “suffering, the origin of suffering, the transformation of suffering, i.e. happiness and the path leading to the transformation of suffering, i.e. leading to joyfulness and happiness.”
Therefore, the Buddha is respected by the world through ten noble titles as follows: “The Buddha, the leading Teacher of our peaceful and holy spirituality, who is the worthiest to be offered, is the One of understanding and love, is the One of having enough virtue of conduct and insight, is the One of attaining perfectly peaceful joyfulness and freedom, is the One of penetrating the world, is the One of having the ability to subdue people, is the Master of both gods and humans, is the fully-enlightened and awakened One and is the One to be revered and respected by the world.”
During forty-five years, the real and useful teachings of the Buddha are called the Dharma. “The Dharma that is well preached by World-Honoured One is very practical in the present, has the value beyond the time, has the ability to convince, avoid and extinguish defilements of desire, anger, delusion, pride, doubt, wrong view, etc. A wise one that can also practice oneself transforms affliction, perceives the Dharma, comes and sees, comes and hears, comes and understands, comes and practices, and comes and enjoys flowers and fruits of peaceful joyfulness and liberation right in here and now in the present life.”
Owing to having enough good conditions to approach Buddhism and making disciples of World-Honoured One, we have many lucky opportunities to practice the Dharma in particular through five awakening things below as follows:
“The first awakening thing is that we respect all living beings’ lives, including humans, animals, there are even plants, trees, flowers, leaves, soils, rocks, etc., we do not kill, chop, burn and destroy forest, mountain, river, stream, pond, lake, the open sea, etc. Practicing the first awakening thing, that is, we are aware to nurture our love toward all living beings, we contribute to protecting the environment and lives of living things and living beings and contribute to building a green, clean and beautiful planet.
The second awakening things is that we respect private and public assets, heritage, minerals and forest products, including gold, silver, gems, needle, blades of grass, bell, wooden bell, timbers, etc., we do not steal and do not appropriate the others’ havings. Practicing the second awakening thing, that is, we are aware to spread our heart of alms-giving toward the poor, the lonely and the needy, we exploit the sources of the natural resources moderately for generations of our descendants to lean on them, we contribute to conserving, maintaining and developing virtue, wealth and prosperity for our family and for the country.
The third awakening thing is that we respect a happy pair, including spouses and children, we do not abuse sexual desire of children, do not violate the other’s chastity, we only relate formally to our lawful spouse. Practicing the third awakening thing, that is, we are aware to protect happiness of our parents, spouses and children; we contribute to bringing peacefulness, feeling of joy and fame to our family, relatives, village and society.
Owing to connecting lineage of the family temple, lay Buddhists must have spouse, children and grandchildren. Owing to the lineal continuation of the sages, owing to inheriting, descending, lighting up the torch of the Dharma, lighting up that of love, monastic Buddhists must spare much time to take care of cultivation, learning, spreading the Dharma and helping many people. The forthgoing One that lives a very light-hearted and leisurely life is not tied by family and children.
The fourth awakening thing is that we respect the truth and confidence for everyone, including grandparents, parents, teachers, friends, etc. We who do not tell a lie do not speak an embellishing word, do not speak a piercing word, do not speak a rough word, do not speak vague and unclear information, do not speak aspiring and avaricious words, do not speak words of creating dissension, discord and disharmony, etc. Practicing the fourth awakening thing, that is, we are aware to say words of the truth, the right, those of confidence, harmony, reconciliation and gentleness, those of affection, softness, sweetness, easiness of hearing, and easiness of love, words of the useful value of building and bringing faith, prestige, harmony, solidarity, and love of authentic brotherhood and sisterhood to ourselves, to the others, to family, to relatives and to the community right in this world.
The fifth awakening thing is that we respect peacefulness, tranquility, quietness, steadiness and carefreeness for the many, including us, our relatives, lovers and neighbours, we who do not drink alcohol, beer do not smoke, do not watch and see depraved film, picture and photograph, especially we do absolutely no use opium and drugs. Practicing the fifth awakening thing, that is, we do not violate the above awakening things, we cultivate the awakening things effortfully, we are aware to protect our healthy and wholesome body, our perspicacious and lucid mind for ourselves, we contribute to building and bringing prestige, the feeling of peaceful joyfulness and happiness to our native land and homeland.
Practicing the above awakening thing solidly, we not only help us, but also help not to know how many living things and living beings on this planet. We contribute to protecting the environment and habitat for this earth, and practically bring flowers and fruits of authentic peacefulness, happiness and peace to the world of humankind today.”
Clearly understanding so, now we live very tranquilly, prospectively we live very peacefully, we live very gently and leisurely. Dwelling stably in the Dharma of World- Honoured One, we live without any fear and worry though life is impermanent, though birth, agedness, disease and death happen to our life in any circumstance, in any moment, our body and mind are still tranquil, leisurely and carefree.
“Though our life is impermanent,
Despite birth, old age, disease and death,
We who have already had the peaceful way,
Do not have worry and fear any longer. ”
We have already had the peaceful way, that is, we choose, practice and apply a training method of being suitable for the Buddha’s teachings with Right View, Right Thought, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration into our day-to-day life. As person living consciously, we cultivate, learn and practice the Buddha’s teaching steadily, we enjoy and taste the peaceful Dharma, the fragrance of joyful flavor and happiness is imbued and freshly pervade our body and mind. From here, we can contribute to bringing authentic peace to all over the place.
“The scent of flowers cannot blow against the wind,
but the fragrance of virtuous person against the wind pervades all directions.”
(Dhammapada, verse No. 54)
Virtuous person is practitioner with cultivation with a life of tranquil joy and happiness, steadiness and leisure. This person has the ability to bring authentic peace to himself and the others right in this life. Indeed, the perfume of his peacefulness and deliverance is brightly shined and pervades all directions. Virtuous person that can be a present as well as future Buddha can be each of us vowing to go on the path of peacefulness and spiritual emancipation, vowing to light up the light of love, vowing to light up the light of peace for the many and vowing to widen peaceful thoughts, peaceful words and peaceful doings to bring flowers and fruits of love and peace to the world.
Understanding and doing so, we each are a messenger of peace, we each are a Buddha of peace and each of us is the personification of peace for everywhere and every place. Peace is authentically present for oneself and for the others when we each apply, practice and dwell solidly in the Dharma of World-Honoured One, we each can enjoy the scent of peaceful and free flavour right here and now in the present life, from here, we can contribute to building every person of happiness, every family of joyful quiet, society of tranquility and prosperousness on over the planet.
Therefore, in spite of lay Buddhists or monastic Buddhists, in spite of Buddhists or non-Buddhists, we are deeply aware that we vow together to go like a stream of river, vow together to go on the path of peace and vow together to nurture our heart of loving-kindness and compassion to contribute to bringing joyful tranquility and happiness to the many.