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Engaged Buddhism

Four Universal Vows [Shiguseigan]
However innumerable sentient beings are,
I vow to save them all.
However inexhaustible defilements are,
I vow to sever them all.
However immeasurable Dharma-gates are,
I vow to learn them all.
However unsurpassable the Awakened Way is,
I vow to achieve it.

The term "Engaged Buddhism" was coined by Thich Nhat Hanh as a way of applying the dharma to reduce social, political, economic and ecological suffering. In practicing Zen, we bring the quiet and calm mind of zazen into our daily practice of the Eightfold Path. There is a tradition that Bodhisattvas are those who have achieved Enlightenment, but refuse to enter Nirvana until all beings do. Most people think of the monastic tradition of Buddhism as a life choice that more or less opts out of conventional society. In fact, the teaching of Dependent Origination shows us that it is meaningless to better oneself and ignore the rest of the world. Buddhist practice has always been engaged with all things.

[Missouri Zen Center's Statement on War]   [Global Ethic]   [Voluntary Simplicity]