Buddhism by Numbers 3


ELEVEN Groups of Kindness: a person entering the Way, the two Truths, the Three Jewels, the Four Noble Truths, the Five Aggregates, the Six Realms, the Seven Steps towards Enlightenment, the Eight Members of the Path, the Nine Consciousnesses, the Ten Bhumis of Realisation, the Eleven Deliverances of Loving Kindness.


TWELVE Branches of Excellent Speech: condensed, melodious, prophetic, verse, spoken with a purpose, conservatory, concerning his past lives, marvellous, establishing a truth, biographical, very detailed.
TWELVE Branches of Excellent Teaching: sutras, poetic summaries, prophecies discourses in verse, intentional statements, contextual accounts, testimonies of realization, historical explanations, accounts of former lives, detailed explanations, wondrous discourses, definitive explanations.
TWELVE Branches of Teachings: Sutra – discourses on a single topic. Geya – discourses in verse. Vyākaraṇa – prophecies of past lives and future possibilities. Gāthā – verse summaries in metered verse within sutras. Udāna – words spoken not to instruct particular individuals. Nidāna – explanations following a specific incident. Avadāna – life stories of buddhas, bodhisattvas, disciples, and various individuals. Itivṛttaka – historical accounts such as genealogies. Jātaka – accounts of previous lives of the Buddha. Vaipulya – lengthy sutras with complex organization. Abidhutadharma – accounts of extraordinary accomplishments of the Buddha, the disciples, and the bodhisattvas. Upadeśa – topics of specific knowledge. These are exact, profound, and subtle instructions on the nature of reality.
TWELVE Great Deeds of the Buddha: existence in Tushita heaven, descent from Tushita, entering the womb of his mother,
birth as a prince, proficiency in the worldly arts, life in the palace, departure from home, practice of austerities, the defeat of Mara, enlightenment, turning the wheel of doctrine, final nirvana.
TWELVE Links of Dependent Origination: ignorance, volition/action/karma, consciousness, name and form), six sense organs, contact, feelings, desire/clinging, attachment/grasping, becoming/conception, birth, old age and death.
TWELVE Sense Doors: the six internal sense organs or facilities, including cognition and their six associated six external sense fields.


THIRTEEN Questions the Buddha Left Unanswered: Are the self and the universe eternal? Are the self and the universe transient? Are the self and the universe both eternal and transient? Are the self and the universe neither eternal nor ephemeral? Do the self and the universe have a beginning? Do the self and the universe have no beginning? Do the self and the universe have both beginning and no beginning? Do the self and the universe have neither beginning nor no beginning? Does the Buddha exist after death? Does the Buddha not exist after death? Does the Buddha neither exist nor not exist after death? Is the mind the same as the body? Are the mind and body two separate entities?
THIRTEEN Possessions of an ordained monk: staff, water pot, water sieve, alms bowl, blanket, three outer robes, two underrobes, a sitting mat, and two pairs of sandals.


FOURTEEN Root Downfalls: to physically or verbally harm one’s vajra master or to entertain wrong views of him/her. To oppose the Buddha’s teachings and go against the guru’s instructions. To develop strong negative and afflictive emotions towards other sentient beings, especially the community of vajra brothers and sisters. To abandon the attitude and practice of loving-kindness towards all sentient beings. To go astray in one’s clinging to sexual bliss and to abandon Bodhicitta. To abuse other traditions, lineages or religions with the motivation of gaining more respect for oneself. To reveal Tantric secrets to those who are not spiritually matured, thereby resulting in the misunderstanding of the teachings. To harm one’s and others’ precious human bodies. To have doubts regarding the Absolute Truth. To refrain from forceful activity when needed so as to overcome destructive influences resulted from negative energies, such as the unwillingness to save or help sentient beings although one has the ability to do so. To have doubts regarding the meaning of suchness.To annoy other sentient beings out of self-concerns. To refrain from certain behavior when appropriate, such as the unwillingness to accept the necessary and appropriate practices (for example, consuming alcohol and meat which are offered in a Ganachakra practice) as and when they are required. To abuse women or regard them as inferior.


FIFTEEN Days of the Buddha’s Miracles: 15 miracles, performed on 15 consecutive days. Day 1/first day of spring: toothpick grows into a marvelous tree. Day 2: emergence of two jewel mountains. Day 3: a great lake emerged. Day 4: a great pond with eight streams emerged. Day 5: a golden light filled the entire world. Day 6: Buddha reveals everyone’s thoughts. Day 7: all listeners became royal supporters of the Dharma. Day 8 Buddha radiated light from his body filling the entire sky. Day 9: Buddha extended his body until it reached the highest heaven. Day 10: The Buddha extended his body again, teaching from a great height. Day 11: while Buddha’s form was not visible the body radiated golden light and a great voice expounded the teaching. Day 12: Buddha radiated golden light that cleared the three poisons from the minds of everyone. Day 13: the Buddha multiplied across the Universe with light rays and lotus flowers. Day 14: flowers changed into twelve hundred and fifty carriages made from jewels. Day 15: Buddha produced food of a hundred different tastes.


SIXTEEN Defilements: 1. three fetters (samyojana), 2. three unvirtuous roots (akusalamula), 3. three fluxes (asrava), 4. four floods (ogha), 5. four connections (yoga), 6. four attachments (grahana), 7. four ties to the body (kayagrantha), 8. five hindrances (nivarana), 9. five fetters (samyojana), 10. five fetters of the lower realms, (avarabhagiyasamyojana), 11. five fetters of the upper realms (urdhvabhagiyasamyojana) (see Ten Fetters), 12. five views (drsti), 13. six desires (kamakaya), 14. seven contaminants (anusaya). 15. nine fetters (samyojana), 16. ninety-eight contaminants (anusaya).
SIXTEEN Arhats: when Buddha was about to enter final nirvāṇa he entrusted his teachings to a group of 16 great Arhats and their disciples.


EIGHTEEN Root Bodhisattva Downfalls: praising oneself and belittling others; not sharing dharma teachings or wealth; not listening to others’ apologies; discarding the Mahayana teachings and propounding made-up ones; taking offerings; forsaking the holy dharma; disrobing monastics or committing such acts as stealing their robes; committing any of the five heinous crimes; holding a distorted, antagonistic outlook; destroying places such as towns; teaching voidness to those whose minds are untrained; turning others away from full enlightenment; turning others away from their pratimoksha vows; belittling the shravaka vehicle; proclaiming a false realization of voidness; accepting what has been stolen from the Triple Gem; establishing unfair policies; giving up bodhichitta. 18 Elements: the 6 sense organs, their objects, their perceptions.
EIGHTEEN Types of Questions of Fen Yang: asking for instruction, presenting one’s understanding, investigating and discerning, meeting of minds, wrapping up/focusing, mental activity, seeking out, not understanding, lifting up, posing a question, intentional question, using things/events, real question, fabricated question, making sure, eliciting, clarifying, silent question.
EIGHTEEN Arhats: depicted in Mahayana Buddhism as the original followers of Gautama Buddha who have followed the Noble Eightfold Path and attained the four stages of enlightenment. : The Arhat Who Rides a Deer, The Joyous Arhat, The Arhat Raising an Alms Bowl, The Arhat Who Holds a Pagoda, The Arhat Who Meditates, The Arhat Who Crossed Rivers, The Arhat Astride an Elephant, The Arhat Who Plays With a Lion, The Arhat Who Reveals His Heart, The Long-Armed Arhat, The Arhat Deep in Thought, The Arhat Who Cleans His Ears, The Cloth Bag Arhat, The Banana Arhat, The Arhat With Long Eyebrows, The Gatekeeper Arhat, The Arhat Who Mastered a Dragon, The Arhat Who Tamed a Tiger.
EIGHTEEN Principal Insights: 1. The contemplation of impermanence abandons the perception of permanence. 2. The contemplation of suffering abandons the perception of pleasure. 3. The contemplation of non-self abandons the perception of self. 4. The contemplation of disenchantment abandons delighting. 5. The contemplation of fading away abandons lust. 6. The contemplation of cessation abandons originating. 7. The contemplation of relinquishment abandons grasping. 8. The contemplation of destruction abandons the perception of compactness. 9. The contemplation of passing away abandons the accumulation of karma. 10. The contemplation of change abandons the perception of stability. 11. The contemplation of the sign-less abandons the sign. 12. The contemplation of the desire-less abandons desire. 13. The contemplation of voidness abandons adherence (to the notion of permanent self). 14. The higher wisdom of insight into phenomena abandons adherence due to grasping at a core. 15. Correct knowledge and vision abandons adherence due to confusion. 16. The contemplation of danger abandons adherence due to attachment. 17. The contemplation of reflection abandons non-reflection. 18. The contemplation of turning away abandons adherence due to bondage.
EIGHTEEN All Knowable Things (dhatus): the six sense objects (visible forms, sounds, smells, tastes, textures, mental objects), six sense faculties (eye faculty, ear faculty, nose faculty, tongue faculty, body faculty, mental faculty), the six sense consciousnesses, eye-consciousness, ear-consciousness, nose-consciousness, tongue-consciousness, body-consciousness, mind-consciousness).
EIGHTEEN Freedoms and Advantages of Human Birth: freedom from the eight states where there is no opportunity to practice the Dharma (hells/preta realms, animals, long-living gods, uncivilized lands, incomplete faculties, wrong views, a buddha has not come). The Five Circumstantial Advantages (a buddha has come, he has taught the Dharma, the teachings have survived, there are followers of the teachings, there are favourable conditions for Dharma practice. The Five Personal Advantages (being a human being, born in a central land, with faculties intact, lifestyle not harmful or wrong, with faith in the three pitakas).


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