In Dharma practice, questions are very important. Most instances of enlightenment recorded occur in dialogues and most of these start from a question. This is how the Dharma is given and received. It is not just a matter of getting the right answer. The very act of asking and answering is a practice. Here I will offer answers to the questions that I get asked from time to time and so we shall meet.

Members: 41
Latest Activity: Sep 17


In this group will be posted answers to questions asked by enquirers about issues in psychology, spirituality, philosophy and personal life. If you want to pose a question, please e-mail it to with the heading "Questions in the Sand".

Discussion Forum

Le pouvoir des mantras

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Sep 17. 0 Replies

Question: Nous avons eu une discussion intéressante sur la syllabe sacrée OM utilisée dans de nombreuses traditions (hindouisme, jaïnisme, bouddhisme,….). Quelqu'un a dit que dans un mantra, l’OM pourrait être remplacé par n’importe quel autre son,…Continue

De kracht van mantra's

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman. Last reply by Désirée Verstraete Sep 14. 1 Reply

Vraag: We hadden een interessante discussie over de heilige lettergreep OM die in vele tradities wordt gebruikt (hindoeïsme, jaïnisme, boeddhisme, ...). Iemand zei dat in een mantra OM kon worden vervangen door gelijk welk geluid, omdat wij het zijn…Continue


Started by Désirée Verstraete. Last reply by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Aug 30. 4 Replies

If we are in Shikantaza, without wanting to achieve something, as in an objectless meditation, without desire, without having a goal, could we not say that we are in the Otherpower then, by being led to sitting and by simply being open-hearted? Or…Continue


Started by David Brazier. Last reply by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Aug 29. 3 Replies

QUESTION: In Jodo Shinshu it seems that an experience of shinjin acts as a kind of 'proof' or 'guarantee' that one has called out to Amida with faith and has been received and will be reborn into the Pureland (do correct me if I'm wrong). What is…Continue


Started by David Brazier. Last reply by David Brazier Aug 19. 2 Replies

QUESTION: What is the best way of reading and interpreting a sutra?SHORT ANSWER: One tries to understand the Dharma contained in it and let the images bring that Dharma to life deep within.LONGER ANSWER: I think one of the points in the questioners…Continue

Le Nembutsu amidiste

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Aug 11. 0 Replies

Question: Quelle est la spécificité de l'approche Amidiste du nembutsu et qu’est-ce qui pourrait la distinguer de l'approche d'autres écoles similaires?Réponse courte: RienRéponse plus longue: Nembutsu est  refuge. Prendre refuge est l'acte mystique…Continue

Amidist nembutsu

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Jul 31. 0 Replies

Vraag: Wat is er specifiek aan de Amidistische benadering van de nembutsu, wat is er anders aan dan in de  benadering van andere vergelijkbare scholen?Kort antwoord: nietsLanger antwoord: Nembutsu is toevlucht nemen. Toevlucht nemen is de mystieke…Continue

La foi et l'Octuple Chemin

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Jul 23. 0 Replies

Question: Si chacun est égal dans l'assurance de sa place dans une Terre Pure, les gens ne sont-ils pas dissuadés de faire des efforts  afin de se comporter noblement (par exemple en suivant le noble Octuple Chemin ?) Comment relier cela à…Continue

Pourquoi l'Amidisme

Started by Vajrapala Lut Moerman Jul 23. 0 Replies

Question: Quelle est la particularité du bouddhisme de la Terre Pure et de sa dévotion à Amida?Réponse courte: Une vision réaliste des personnes, une spiritualité générique et une pratique simple.Réponse plus longue: Le bouddhisme de la  Terre Pure…Continue


Started by Robert McCarthy. Last reply by David Brazier Jun 14. 1 Reply

A view I have is that human culture will inevitably destroy global ecology. The hindsight we have now if we dare look comes far too late in the process of human evolution to avoid this outcome. When we talk of emptiness are we not talking of life…Continue

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Blog Posts

Running a Course in Korea and Elsewhere

Posted by David Brazier on August 3, 2018 at 1:40 2 Comments

I am currently leading courses on Buddhist psychology here in Seoul, Korea, but as I am putting the course onto this site as we go along, members of La Ville au Roi (Eleusis) are also responding so it is a bit as though the course is going on in several countries at the same time which is nice.

Varlam Shalamov

Posted by Geeta Chari on July 16, 2018 at 0:00 1 Comment

From The Paris Review:

For fifteen years the writer Varlam Shalamov was imprisoned in the Gulag for participating in “counter-revolutionary Trotskyist activities.” He endured six of those years enslaved in the gold mines of Kolyma, one of the coldest and most hostile places on earth. While he was awaiting sentencing, one of his short stories was…


The Buddha, Season 1, Episode 1

Posted by Geeta Chari on June 29, 2018 at 9:21 1 Comment

I have been watching The Buddha on Netflix, and although I came well-prepared to scoff, there is a surprising amount of food for thought from a Pureland perspective. What follows is a review of the Pureland touches in the episode, coloured inevitably by my upbringing in India, although I have now lived in Britain for more than half my life.

The scene opens in the republic of Kapilavastu, depicted as a green and pleasant land, with the Himalayan mountains as a backdrop. (I was…


Nembutsu Question

Posted by Dayamay Dunsby on April 20, 2018 at 8:22 1 Comment

I found this in a book that I'm reading. It has challenged my current "understanding" of the Nembutsu. I tend to think of the name itself as salvation and the bridge to the Pure Land...

"...Nembutsu is not a means to gain salvation but a reflection of it. Shinran acknowledges there is nembutsu without true entrusting because he lived in an environment where nembutsu was recited for benefits and merit. By itself it cannot produce true entrusting. Nevertheless, they are inseparable as…


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