Posted in Zen Buddhism

The Four Great Vows

Several members of my Zen Center and I are studying to become dharma teachers. (“Dharma” is best translated as “teachings,” thought I’ve seen it as “law.”) We’re beginning at the beginning: studying vows. One set that we say after each evening’s meditation is the Four Great Vows. Tonight we received some wonderful instruction on what these really mean at various levels

Sentient beings are numberless; we vow to save them all.

Delusions are endless; we vow to cut through them all.

The teachings are infinite; we vow to learn them all.

The Buddha way is inconceivable; we vow to attain it.

Author:

Ven. Dr. Myodo Jabo (Sandy Gougis) is a Zen Master and Priest in the Five Mountain Zen Order. She began studying Theravâdin Buddhism in 1998, adding Zen in 2003, and Vajrayana Buddhism in 2008. She currently practices in both the Zen and Tibetan traditions. Her Zen teacher is Most Ven. Wonji Dharma of the Five Mountain Zen Order, and her Tibetan guru is Lama Tsultrim Allione of Tara Mandala. In her free time, Myodo enjoys painting, jewelry making, and other creative endeavors.

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