By Stanley Jeyaraja Tambiah

ISBN-10: 0511558171

ISBN-13: 9780511558177

ISBN-10: 0521259843

ISBN-13: 9780521259842

ISBN-10: 0521277876

ISBN-13: 9780521277877

The significant actors during this e-book are a few reclusive forest-dwelling ascetic meditation masters who've been acclaimed as 'saints' in modern Thailand. those saints initially pursued their salvation quest one of the remoted villages of the country's outer edge, yet as soon as well-known as holy males endowed with air of secrecy, they grew to become the radiating centres of a country-wide cult of amulets. The amulets, blessed by means of the saints, are avidly sought by way of royalty, ruling generals, intelligentsia and customary people alike for his or her alleged powers to persuade the luck of worldly transactions, no matter if political, monetary, martial or romantic.

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Ten devices (kasinas): four elements - earth, water, fire, and air; four colors - blue, yellow, red, and white; and light and limited space. 2. Ten kinds of foulness of decaying corpses {asubbhas), namely the bloated, the livid, the festering, the cut-up, the gnawed, the scattered, the hacked and scattered, the bleeding, the worm infested, and a skeleton. 3. Ten recollections: the chief of these being the trinity - the Buddha (the Enlightened One), the Dhamma (the Law), and the sahgha (the community) - which are followed by the recollections of virtue, generosity, the deities, mindfulness of death, the body, breathing, and peace.

Although the Buddha is said to have rejected austere asceticism, he does not appear to have denied the efficacy of a controlled, ascetic mode of life, if not for all his disciples, at least for those disciples who were inclined in that direction. The Buddha's steering of the middle course implied the acceptance of different options and paths (within limits of course) that different bhikkhu may follow. In fact, with regard to the ascetic practices the Vinaya has a not entirely consistent story to tell.

The alms-food-eater's practice: The bhikkhu's vow is to gather and eat the lumps (pinda) of alms food offered by others. ) 4. The house-to-house-seeker's practice: The bhikkhu wanders from house to house collecting food; he is a "gapless wanderer" (sapaddna-cdrin) in the sense that he walks from house to house, to all houses, indifferently and without distinction, begging from everyone and showing no preference. 5. The one-sessioner's practice: The bhikkhu eats only one meal a day in one uninterrupted session.

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The Buddhist Saints of the Forest and the Cult of Amulets by Stanley Jeyaraja Tambiah


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