Basic Buddhism (1): An Introduction and What to do When You Meet A Buddhist Monk or Nun

Published January 26, 2015 by jptan2012

My email has been barraged with questions and requests for the Vajrapani Ruel, unfortunately, I don’t think I’ll be able to read all emails and between emails about the WISH FULFILLING AND BUDDHA’S BLESSING MANTRA PENDANT, the FOUR DHARMKAKAYA RELIC MANTRAS AMULET, the NAMTSO SALT, and now the VAJRAPANI RUEL, I think there would be more unanswered emails and I’m really sorry for this.

The internet has made it possible for people to know more about Buddhism and Buddhist amulets, however, I’m afraid that the internet has also, in a way, distorted the real concept of Buddhism. Buddhism is not simply about lighting incense, or wearing images of the Buddhas or Bodhisattvas or Deities, or chanting mantras. Buddhist is all that but it is definitely much more than that, what I’ve written here on this blog, despite of the fact that some people saying it is substantial, is in reality just a fraction of what Buddhism really is.

The popularity of the WISH FULFILLING AND BUDDHA’S BLESSING MANTRA PENDANT with it’s numerous personal testimonies, the demand for the FOUR DHARMAKAYA RELIC MANTRAS AMULET, the rising popularity and demand both for the NAMTSO SALT and the VAJRAPANI RUEL, which is considered as the most powerful amulet the Buddhist pantheon, may have diverted some people from understanding real Buddhism.

Yes, the NAMTSO SALT, the VAJRAPANI RUEL, and the FOUR DHARMAKAYA RELIC MANTRAS AMULET are some of the most powerful amulets in the world. In fact, according to Lama Zopa Rinpoche, all stupas should contain the Four Dharmakaya Relic Mantras! (Speaking of Stupas and Four Dharmakaya Relic Mantras, in the next few days you shall read my post about it and regarding the special gift I got from a reader, AC. These are all written already but will be posted automatically via the scheduled post.) But these things are not available to everybody, and having a bigger picture of what Buddhism is all about is way better than simply having one of these items. The WISH FULFILLING AND BUDDHA’S BLESSING MANTRA PENDANT, which is no longer available for new requests until we have delivered all requests for it, also garnered some popularity the past two years with my inbox loaded with a lot of personal testimonies about it. Again, these are just tools, Buddhism is all so much more about that.

Thus, I have decided to come up with a new category and series called BASIC BUDDHISM. The objective of which is really to talk about Buddhism outside the amulets, the wearing of pendants. The topics are going to be pretty basic because I don’t think I can talk about Buddhism deeply, but the topics should be able to give you some basic guideline on Buddhist protocol and on basic Buddhism. Nevertheless, you should understand, that there are many lineage of Buddhism. In Tibetan Buddhism alone, there are four lineages, and there is Mahayana Buddhism and there is Zen Buddhism, and Pure Land Buddhism, their basic teachings are basically the same but there may be some variations. What I will discuss here is the Buddhism that I practice, which is a mixture of Tibetan, Mahayana and Zen Buddhism. I will try my best to be very specific as to what kind of Buddhism I’m talking about if it’s possible.Buddhist monks2

After the long introduction, today let me start with something quite simple, let me talk about a basic Buddhist protocol and I chose this topic because a lot of people have been asking me about this.

What to do when you meet a Buddhist monk or nun?

Let me start for non – Buddhist. Please do not stare at them, and if you have some belief and respect for Buddhism bowing your head is already a sign of respect.

For Buddhist, it is customary to greet Buddhist monks and nuns with OM MANI PADME HUM, or AMITOFU, or NAMASTE. Do this and do a half – bow, which is actually bowing, from your waist. Make sure that you put your palms together.

Make sure you don’t touch them, especially if you’re of different gender, this is considered disrespectful. In some countries, like Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, the Buddhist monks there are not even allowed to receive things from women.

It is customary to let them pass first and bow once they have pass.

For some lineage, especially Tibetan Buddhism, it is important that you don’t stand taller than the lama; so bending your knee a little is widely appreciated.

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