The Inversion of Buddhism in Heart of Darkness In Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, Marlow is described more than once as sitting in the pose of a Buddha while he begins his story. Even our first view of Marlow prepares us for the later comparison: "Marlow sat cross-legged... He had sunken cheeks, a yellow complexion, a strait back, an ascetic aspect, and, with his arms dropped, the palms of hands outwards, resembled an idol" (16). This is the very image of a meditating Buddha. Our suspicions are confirmed that Conrad is indeed making reference to the Buddha as he describes the pose of the Buddha of Compassion-- note the hand raised in blessing: " 'Mind,' he began again, lifting one arm from the elbow, the palm of the hand outwards so that, with his legs folded before him, he had the pose of a Buddha preaching in European clothes with out a lotus-flower" (20).
A practice that helps monks achieve this enlightened state is meditation. By clearing the mind of mundane clutter and distractions, a monk can become in tune with his inner being and body, which results in a greater understanding of the barriers that need to collapse before nirvana can be achieved. This practice of meditation was the Buddhist practice that I participated in, with the intent on a greater understanding of what being a Buddhist means. This exercise taught me the inherent difficulty in calming the mind, along with the negative effects outside influences like other people have on the practice. The first place I attempted to meditate was outside my dorm next to a tree.
This type of mindfulness meditation is known as shamatha in Buddhism. It basically forces you to focus on the present because you have to continue to follow the inhale and exhale of your breath. You can be mindful of the way you eat, taking a shower, driving to work or enjoying quiet time with your spouse. Every moment in every day is an opportunity to practice mindfulness. In Buddhism, the Buddha realized that focusing on just his breath allowed him to accurately perceive reality and attain enlightenment.
In John Snellings book, The Buddhist Handbook, he said “Buddhist believe that a person can change for the better. Buddhist practice meditation to develop more positive states of mind that are characterized by calm, concentration, awareness, and emotions such as friendliness.” This statement is true because; almost every time you see a person that practices Buddhism get upset they start meditating to ease their mind. This act helps them relieve all negative vibes around them. The act of Buddhism originated after the death of Buddha many years ago. “Soon after Buddha’s death or par nirvana, five hundred monks met at the first council at Rajagrha, under the leadership of Kashyapa.
Meditation Is meditation beneficial for the soul? Meditation is the practice in which a human being trains the mind or induces a mode of consciousness, either to realize some benefit or as an end in itself. Many people ponder upon this practice, therefore are passive and do not take neither the time nor effort into the practice of meditation because of the thought inside saying “is it worth it?” To answer this: yes, meditating does take time, but the benefits that are acquired throughout the practice exceed all the negative contemplations that go through the mind before beginning. Meditating takes time, but takes little to no effort. Meditation is the process in which one relieves the day to day “clutter” in their minds to find themselves in more serene vicinity.
The second ha is when the villager comes along and talks to the monk about the story of the Young Cherry Tree and the significance behind whose grave it belonged to. When the villager leaves and Tadanori appears, Tadanori talks about his desire and reason wh... ... middle of paper ... ... the blossoms” and again when “the flower again shall seek his root.” I thought then perhaps although the main story was about the monk helping Tadanori, Tadanori also helped the monk. At the start of the story the monk states that he was “one who no longer loves even blossoms” meant that he no longer loved poetry. On the next page though I thought it was strange how he said, “let us rest awhile and look at the cherry blossoms”. “These blossoms, O monk, drew you on to seek lodging here, because I wished that you should hear my tale.” Although Tadanori did it for his own reasons, in the end, it showed the monk that he could not leave poetry (266-267, 271,276).
Meditation involves achieving a state of “thoughtless awareness” according to many practitioners. There are two general categories of meditation, Mantra and Open Mindfulness. The word mantra has two parts: man, which is the root of the Sanskrit word for mind; and tra, which is the root of the word instrument. Mantra meditation requires the use of a selected instrument to concentrate your focused and attention to. Repetition of this selected mantra will help you enter in a deep state of meditation and disconnect you from negative thoughts filling your mi... ... middle of paper ... ... first did not help at all!
In China Buddhism mixed with Taoism, and the result was the Ch'an School of Buddhism, and from there Ch'an spread to Japan where it is called Zen Buddhism (DailyZen). The Buddhist Religion has always been passed down from teacher to student, and through the use of books and sacred works such as the Malind-panha, Pali Tipitaka, and the Pitaka series (Merit 102). These books and teachers taught students of the religion the philosophies of the practice. They taught of Satori, or enlightenment, which is the main goal of the Zen Buddhist, which is to achieve peace of mind despite external turmoil ( Archer ninety-six). One way to reach enlightenment is through meditation.
When you first get to the hall, you are informed to bow at the Buddha, then walk in to your seat, bow to the Buddha status again, and then to the person sitting across from you. Even though the meditation had not started, we were still required to do so. When we went into the zendo we were taught how to sit. Even though that sounds silly, it actually was very important. During the meditation, one is not supposed to... ... middle of paper ... ...s at the center go by, he will learn more and more.
They helped the samurai clear their mind before any battle to not fear death, but rather embrace the possibility of it. In conclusion, it is safe to say that Zen Buddhism is a samurai religion. The two connected perfectly together. It aided the samurai at their way of life through meditation and way of being. It heavily influenced them in their battle physically and mentally, martial arts, and their principles.