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calling on Avalokiteshvara

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calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby littletsu on Wed Mar 12, 2014 2:08 pm

How can I call on Guanyin? I know this question sounds a little silly, as there are innumerable ways to do such a thing,
but still, is there some sort of a formality that I may want to follow? I don't have an Avalokiteshvara statue yet,
so probably I will print a picture.

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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Kim on Wed Mar 12, 2014 3:19 pm

Do it the same way you call for a friend. That is the best and simplest way.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Mar 12, 2014 4:50 pm

Littletsu,

I don't know how.

But, I'd like to share a view that was expressed by my teacher Sheng Yen about Guanyin.

Sheng Yen wrote that many people in Taiwan are devoted to Guanyin and call on her regularly. When he was asked whether he feels that there really IS a Guanyin -- a spiritual entity with vast, compassionate powers -- he replied that in his view, Guanyin is really a kind of REFLECTOR, and her powers are really the collective energy of all the PEOPLE who revere her enough to call on her. So, in that way, she really is powerful, and really is REAL.

For whatever motivates you to call on her, I hope you experience real assistance.

Below is an image of a postcard from Shasta Abbey Buddhist Monastery that I have had framed in my house for many years, which I photographed this morning for you. Evidently the card is made from an original painting at the monastery in California. I obtained the postcard from their online "store" catalog of Buddhist supplies, and it may still be available from there.

best,

--Joe

Guanyin_card.gif


littletsu wrote:How can I call on Guanyin?
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Last edited by desert_woodworker on Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Kim on Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:11 pm

A fine painting!

In tantric teachings, deities/gods/goddesses are considered to be aspects of our own consciousness/awareness. Deities may of course be called upon like Christians call for Jesus Christ or hindus call for the Divine Mother, sort of worshipping external entities, but I think most tantric teachings have quite a different view.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Anders on Wed Mar 12, 2014 6:18 pm

littletsu wrote:How can I call on Guanyin? I know this question sounds a little silly, as there are innumerable ways to do such a thing,
but still, is there some sort of a formality that I may want to follow? I don't have an Avalokiteshvara statue yet,
so probably I will print a picture.

:Namaste:


You can simply invoke her name "Namo Avalokiteshvara Bodhisattva". Or invoke her mantra "Om Mani Padme Hum."

This is the extent of formality required that will enable her to connect with you. The rest comes from the deepness of your sincerity and aspiration. Approaching her like a sister/brother/friend happy to help, and an attitude also that your are equally happy to receive such help, is a good approach.

Repetition can help to solidify the connection and mind that transmit your sincerity, but the main thing is really your intention and the persistence and depth of it.

Avalokiteshvara has a lot of power to help in this world and will respond to pleas for her aid, but it's not always that our own karmic circumstances allow to perceive that help. But, for example, if it's an inner question rather than external circumstance, the response to it will usually come from within. Here it helps to just listen patiently and allow her to work through you. At some unexpected time, which could even be the very moment afterwards or weeks afterwards, the response will be known - by the quality that you will just know without having attempted to present the answer yourself. Heartknowing so to speak. Avalokiteshvara loves speaking through one's own heart. Such an unfolding can even go so deep to the point where there is no actual difference between the heart of Avalokiteshvara and one's own heart!

External help is much harder to discern and it is rarely the case we get what we want, as much as what we might need. And even then, karma is as karma does. Some things are hard to avoid. Often it can simply be a case of opportunities to make something good from a bad situation. Usually, such aid comes through circumstance that your own good intentions helped create anyway. So there's very much an inner aspect to such assistance as well.

As for the nature of Avalokiteshvara, I don't think it matters much. Whether it's a Buddha in the sky, a force of collective consciousness, or an secret aspect of one's own consciousness, or even a bit of all three, there's still a primal benevolence there that can be relied on and used for good.

As one old master put it: "She knows she isn't real." Ultimately, all she wants is to help us realise the same about ourselves.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"
--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby ed blanco on Wed Mar 12, 2014 8:25 pm

When I need desperate help I call on the Holy Mother.
I say 3 Hail Mary's and ask her to be present in my life and I feel better.
I have always felt my prayers if not answered at least listened to.
In Japan when Christianity was being persecuted Catholic used the Kanzeon statues to represent Mary.
I truly hope that my last thoughts are to her.

Joe, your Guanyin has the very blue of Mary.
That is a beautiful, loving and hearing Mother.

:O:
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby partofit22 on Wed Mar 12, 2014 8:49 pm

When I call, it's sort of in the form of chant and don't think I've any specific picture in my mind at the time but feel pretty desperate when times like that arise ..
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby fukasetsu on Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:51 pm

Anders wrote:As one old master put it: "She knows she isn't real." Ultimately, all she wants is to help us realise the same about ourselves.


lol!

I never called upon anything ever, but now that I'm reading your reply and find out that people make a calling because they're feeling "stress/desperation" it seems that such calling is kind of like asking folks to read the Heart sutra.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Mar 12, 2014 10:42 pm

Ed,

Yes indeed, sir, very definitely, the blue of the painting echoes the blue statuary of Mary that I, too, grew up with as a kid and teenager in our very conservative Italian-American Roman Catholic parish in New Jersey.

Being there, and kneeling at the altar to carry out the priest's assigned Penance prayers after Confession, was such an other-worldly experience, in the darkened church on Saturday afternoons. There were statues of many figures throughout the box-like church, which was in a basement floor of the building which also housed the Catholic School -- I attended Public School, however (which, in USA, is the local-government school, not a private school as in England).

I alternated usually between kneeling at two prominent statuary displays: the one of Jesus, on the cross, with thorned crown; and the one of Mary, with her crown of stars, holding aloft the young Jesus in her arms.

Kneeling, I'd look up at the one I was in front of, and "recite" my mental Penance prayers silently. You know, I often wondered how they were "heard": I thought that God and the Saints had a direct connection to the doings of our minds.

This was good training for me, and a precursor to my becoming Buddhist formally in 1979 when I took the Precepts with Master Sheng Yen for the first time. Did I relinquish Catholicism? I told my (sainted) mother that I would not, but I note that I have not been observant ever since my first 7-day Ch'an retreat in May, 1979.

However, I have also attended 7-day Christian Contemplative retreats with (the late) Patrick Hawk, Roshi, who was also a Catholic Redemptorist Priest, and participated in daily Eucharist on those retreats, which were otherwise structured just like Zen sesshin, and used the same daily schedule (5 AM - 9 PM).

But, now, Ed... you should know -- or, must be told -- that the Shasta Abbey group is very much influenced in its flavor, structure, and "ways" by the Church of England. So, their rather Western-looking Guanyin in the painting reflects Christian imagery, most definitely. Note, too, her celestially blue eyes... .

w/ Bows,

gassho.gif


--Joe

ed blanco wrote:Joe, your Guanyin has the very blue of Mary.
That is a beautiful, loving and hearing Mother.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby littletsu on Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:09 pm

Thanks for the help!

Joe, your Avalokiteshvara is interesting, indeed. Just like this Japanese depiction of Holy Mary.
I took the photo in Osaka, in the "Holy Mary Cathedral", which looks like a congress hall.

Image
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby desert_woodworker on Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:19 pm

Littletsu,

Absolutely lovely, thank you! There's something of the Russian Orthodox "icon" imagery about her, too. And thanks for the rather large-size, high-resolution image, it is very fine.

I think Ed will appreciate this image, also.

I'll copy it and add it to my cache of images which I "must" print in color(s): I have only a black-and-white laser printer at home. But, fine color-printers abound at the Observatory.

Blessings, and
gassho.gif


--Joe

littletsu wrote:Thanks for the help!

Joe, your Avalokiteshvara is interesting, indeed. Just like this Japanese depiction of Holy Mary.
I took the photo in Osaka, in the "Holy Mary Cathedral", which looks like a congress hall.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby littletsu on Thu Mar 13, 2014 1:25 am

I am happy you like it. For some reason it doesnt appear here in its entirity.
So here is the place where I uploaded it to link it in here.

http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=2wrhj85 ... yD6TF5kJ9U
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby ed blanco on Thu Mar 13, 2014 1:40 pm

The face expression is very buddhist...like Kanzeon (Guanjin)
Beautiful.
:heya:
:O:

I printed it in the school color printer and the backgroud is golden...it came out great. Thanks.
The expression is zazen-like, truly wise compassion.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Meido on Fri Mar 14, 2014 4:31 am

Joe,

May I ask where in Nj?

Among the first manifestations of a sort of religious sense that I experienced occurred as a child, while gazing up at the crucifixion sculpture (with Mary in her blue) behind the altar of our parish in Morris county.

It has seemed that we have a number of things in common :)

~ Meido
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Linda Anderson on Fri Mar 14, 2014 5:49 am

so many blessings with diff names... Guadalupe, Magdalene, Mary, Quanyin, Green Tara, White Tara, Red Tara, Avalokiteshvara, Kanzeon and many more... Blessings and compassion, no matter her name, our own heart.

The very first time I went to zen many, many years ago, it was all foreign... we sang Kanzeon at the end ... and I do mean sang a melody, quite the scandal at the time. Anyway, I had no idea who Kanzeon was, actually I couldn't tell it was a being, it was a word I didn't know. That same night, I woke up at 3am with my heart bursting open .... I knew who Kanzeon was. My own heart.... no diff from Guadalupe, or Magdalene or Tara of the many colors, all my heart connections, I don't know how. call her name, call yourself

om tare tuttare ture soha
:Namaste:
Not last night,
not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby Linda Anderson on Fri Mar 14, 2014 6:45 am

Joe,
Thus I have heard that Kennett Roshi of Shasta Abbey was quite a presence from those who saw her (I didn't ).... so it seems that she was much more than "influenced by the Church of England"... so I wonder are you talking about how Kennett Roshi brought the influence of the Church of England to Shasta Abbey. She was English. I know nothing of the Abbey, but feel her presence from ppl who knew her.

Wiki...
Houn Jiyu-Kennett (Japanese: 法雲慈友ケネット, January 1, 1924 – November 6, 1996), born Peggy Teresa Nancy Kennett, was a British roshi most famous for having been the first female to be sanctioned by the Soto School of Japan to teach in the West.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby fukasetsu on Fri Mar 14, 2014 7:10 am

Kim wrote:In tantric teachings, deities/gods/goddesses are considered to be aspects of our own consciousness/awareness. Deities may of course be called upon like Christians call for Jesus Christ or hindus call for the Divine Mother, sort of worshipping external entities, but I think most tantric teachings have quite a different view.


Yep and both views are not correct, so pray and call away as long as it makes you a better "human"

ps.. would "they" consider us humanoids, aspect of their consciousness or external entities, do you think? :heya:
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby ed blanco on Fri Mar 14, 2014 2:20 pm

Linda Anderson wrote:so many blessings with diff names... Guadalupe, Magdalene, Mary, Quanyin, Green Tara, White Tara, Red Tara, Avalokiteshvara, Kanzeon and many more... Blessings and compassion, no matter her name, our own heart.

The very first time I went to zen many, many years ago, it was all foreign... we sang Kanzeon at the end ... and I do mean sang a melody, quite the scandal at the time. Anyway, I had no idea who Kanzeon was, actually I couldn't tell it was a being, it was a word I didn't know. That same night, I woke up at 3am with my heart bursting open .... I knew who Kanzeon was. My own heart.... no diff from Guadalupe, or Magdalene or Tara of the many colors, all my heart connections, I don't know how. call her name, call yourself

om tare tuttare ture soha
:Namaste:


:rbow: :O:
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IN SPEECH YOU HEAR ITS SILENCE

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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Mar 14, 2014 6:59 pm

Meido,

Surely. It was in Middlesex County, in the city of Perth Amboy, at the mouth of the Raritan River, across the Arthur Kill from the southern tip of Staten Island, NY, joined to that borough by the George W. Outerbridge Bridge (yes, the bridge is named after a man named "Outerbridge").

Our parish was "Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary", a very close, smallish, warm, Italian-American parish. I loved it. The several priests were from Italy, and all spoke with Italian-influenced accents. This made their recitation of the Latin Mass very authentic-sounding, indeed, but then the Vatican II Councils occurred, and the Mass turned English. A few Masses per year were still celebrated in Latin from time to time on special occasions, and these were well attended.

The single aspect that impressed me most in my church-going was the Transubstantiation. Well, as well as Absolution, and Penance. Truly mystical (and "magical"), to my young mind and imagination.

And readings from the Gospels in which Jesus performed miracles were awfully impressive to me, too.

When I got to college, I attended Mass at a campus chapel which was staffed by volunteer priests from the rather rebellious, Jesuit, Woodstock Seminary in New York. They were very liberal, and I liked them very much. They brought in readings from Thomas Merton ("Father Louie"), for example, whom I learned had practiced something called "Zen", in Japan. :)

Naturally, the atmosphere they set was not at all like that of our old conservative Trinitarian Italian priests. My close consultation with one of them on one occasion during Freshman year, Father "Chris", was the catalyst to give me an entirely new appreciation of Christianity and my old Catholicism, and set me free, free enough even to convert enthusiastically and gratefully to Ch'an Buddhism when the time was ripe.

I actually see my old Christianity and Catholicism as the early days of my Buddhist practice. A person has to start somewhere.

Since I am an Astronomer, I also like to say that I thank my lucky stars.

With very best regards,

Many blessings,

:O:

--Joe

Meido wrote:Joe,

May I ask where in Nj?

Among the first manifestations of a sort of religious sense that I experienced occurred as a child, while gazing up at the crucifixion sculpture (with Mary in her blue) behind the altar of our parish in Morris county.

It has seemed that we have a number of things in common :)

~ Meido
"The abundance of Nature is not a matter of its 'providing' ". -- William James, c. 1901.
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Re: calling on Avalokiteshvara

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Mar 14, 2014 7:54 pm

Linda,

Kennett Roshi's several books have been influential on me. Her Dharma talks are also quite moving and entertaining -- what a great delivery and voice!

I pick up a C.O.E. influence in the clothing, the naming of things, and in their scripture book. For example, their practice place is an "Abbey", and they eat in a "Refectory" (not on their cushions). Other influences, too, I may have forgotten in the 35-plus years since I encountered her, and her sangha's doings. I had not met the Roshi, nor visited the Abbey. I have several videos (VHS tapes) of talks by several of her successors, showing also the Abbey building and demonstrating their practice there. It looks good.

--Joe

Linda Anderson wrote:Joe,
... so I wonder are you talking about how Kennett Roshi brought the influence of the Church of England to Shasta Abbey. She was English. I know nothing of the Abbey, but feel her presence from ppl who knew her.
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