Four nails

The four nails or “four nails that secure the life-force of the practice” (Wyl. srog sdom gzer bzhi; Tib. sok dom zer shyi), an important aspect of kyerim practice, are:

The nail of all appearance as the deity (nangwa lha yi zer) or the nail of concentration (samadhi) on the deity (ting nge dzin lha’i zer) or (kyerim lha'i zer)

The nail of all sound as the mantra (dra drak ngak kyi zer) or the nail of the essence mantra (nyingpo ngak kyi zer)

The nail of the activity of emanation and absorption (tro du trinlé kyi zer)

The nail of the unchanging wisdom mind (gongpa mingyurwé zer)

According to Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche, these four points were first taught as a special mengak by Guru Padmasambhava in the Kagyé Deshek Düpa.


Alternative Translations

Four stakes that bind the life-force (Dharmachakra Translation Committee)

Four stakes to bind the life-force (Erik Pema Kunsang)

Four linchpins (Lama Chökyi Nyima)

A śrāvaka in Jainism is a lay Jain. He is the hearer of discourses of monastics and scholars, Jain literature. In Jainism, the Jain community is made up of four sections: monks, nuns, śrāvakas (laymen) and śrāvikās (laywomen).

According to Vasubandhu's Yogacara teachings, there are four types of śrāvakas:[33]

The fixed
The arrogant
The transformed
The converted (to "Bodhi" or Buddhism)

In addition, in SN 17.23,[22] SN 17.24[23] and AN 4.18.6,[24] the Buddha identifies four pairs of disciples "who have no compare" and who should thus be emulated. These four pairs are a subset of the 80 foremost disciples identified in the sub-section 14 of AN 1 (i.e. AN 1.188-267). These four pairs of disciples to be most emulated are:

monks: Sāriputta and Mahāmoggallāna
nuns: Khemā and Uppalavaṇṇā
laymen: Citta and Hatthaka of Alavi[25]
laywomen: Kujjuttara and Veḷukaṇḍakiyā[26]




An eel is any fish belonging to the order Anguilliformes (/æŋˌɡwɪlᵻˈfɔːrmiːz/), which consists of four suborders, 20 families, 111 genera and about 800 species. Most eels are predators. The term "eel" (originally referring to the European eel) is also used for some other similarly shaped fish, such as electric eels and spiny eels, but these are not members of the Anguilliformes order.


In addition to linking the gankyil with the "wish-fulfilling jewel" (Skt. cintamani), Robert Beer makes the following connections:


The gakyil or 'wheel of joy' is depicted in a similar form to the ancient Chinese yin-yang symbol, but its swirling central hub is usually composed of either three or four sections. The Tibetan term dga' is used to describe all forms of joy, delight, and pleasure, and the term 'khyil means to circle or spin. The wheel of joy is commonly depicted at the central hub of the dharmachakra, where its three or four swirls may represent the Three Jewels and victory over the three poisons, or the Four Noble Truths and the four directions. As a symbol of the Three Jewels it may also appear as the "triple-eyed" or wish-granting gem of the chakravartin. In the Dzogchen tradition the three swirls of the gakyil primarily symbolize the trinity of the base, path, and fruit.


A trikhep (Wylie: khri khebs "throne cover") from 19th century Bhutan. Throne covers were placed atop the temple cushions used by high lamas. The central circular swirling quadrune is the gankyil in its mode as the "Four Joys".


Sixteen characteristics

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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The sixteen characteristics are an extended elaboration of the Four Noble Truths. For each truth, they describe four characteristics.


Tibetan tradition[edit]

The Tibetan tradition emphasizes the study of the sixteen characteristics of the Four Noble Truths, as described in the Abhisamayalamkara. The Mahayana text Ornament of Clear Realization (Abhisamayalamkara) identifies four characteristics of each truth, for a total of sixteen characteristics, which are presented as a guide to contemplating and practicing the four noble truths.[1] The Ornament of Clear Realization is a key text in the curriculum of Tibetan Buddhist monasteries and study colleges, and this method of study and practice is emphasized in the Tibetan tradition.



These sixteen characteristics are identified as follows:[2][web 1]


Truth of suffering[edit]

These characteristics refer to the five aggregates[3]


impermanence - the five aggregates are impermanent and change from moment to moment

suffering - the five aggregates have come into being because of avidya (ignorance) and kleshas (disturbing emotions), and they are under the influence of the avidya and kleshas

emptiness - there is no "self" outside of the five aggregates that controls or makes use of the five aggregates

selflessness - there is no "self" to be found within the five aggregates that controls or makes use of the five aggregates

Truth of origin[edit]

These characteristics refer to karma, kleshas, and avidya (ignorance)[4]


causes - karma, kleshas, and avidya are constantly arising within our mental continuum, and because of their nature they have the quality of being the causes of suffering.

origin - kleshas and karma are the actual origin of suffering, not just intermediate links.

strong production - avidya, kleshas, and karma act forcefully as the main causes of suffering (they are not just passive ingredients)

condition - avidya, kleshas, and karma are more than just the main causes of suffering, they are also the contributory causes

Truth of cessation[edit]

These characteristics refer to cessation[5]


cessation - cessation is the ceasing of all kleshas and avidya forever

pacification - cessation pacifies the torment of suffering, brings true peace

being superb - cessation is supreme in bringing about the source of all health and happiness

definite emergence - cessation will definitely bring us out of samsara

Truth of the path[edit]

These characteristics refer to the path[6]


path - the path leads to cessation

awareness - the path leads us to a full and complete understanding of the root of cyclic existence (samsara) and the means to escape it

achievement - through the path, we can definitely achieve the result of liberation and enlightenment

deliverance - the path delivers us from the bondage of our conditioned existence


Having said that, I continue my exploration of the Buddha’s river analogy which students are telling me has been so helpful throughout the week. This time I am adding in another of the Buddha’s teachings, because I see within this river analogy an opportunity to discuss the Buddha’s Eight Worldly Winds.


The Winds are four pairs of opposites. They are: pleasure and pain; loss and gain; praise and blame; and ill-repute and fame. These paired opposites are worldly winds because the winds blow and we are all affected in some way.


With these four paired opposites, we can see how they could easily blow us toward one shore or the other. (Remember that one shore is over-indulgence, the other self-denial. We are through our meditation practice, maintaining our course on the river, finding the rich nourishing infinite river that courses through our being.)



He (Gautama Siddhartha) is reported to have born in 540 B.C. according to some sources, in 563 in others, in 624, or 642, or 644 in others. He became enlightened under the Bodhi tree. There were 3 Buddhas before him. They also went to Bodh Gaya and became enlightened there.


Many, many examples of Pre-Christian Myrterdom, were texts repeat that the Buddha gives his life for all. One time he is beheaded by a king, using the social contract of Socrates and Jesus (who did not run from his cross) also the Crucifixion in the Mrcchakatika, and also keeping in mind that both of these figures were imPALEd on a stake and that the Pali Paligha (cross bar) was used to represent an obsticle, the Buddha introduces this symbolic speech in the pre-Christian Pali texts by illustrating a man impaled on a stake over a ditch.


All this time I had the hunch that there must be Buddhist parallels to the gospel narratives of the trial, death and resurrection of Jesus. A few years ago, I succeeded serendipitously in making a literary connection between the Sanskrit play Mrcchakatika (The Little Clay Cart), which is a dramatic enactment of the trial of Charudatta and the resurrection of the courtesan Vasantasena, who returns in the nick of time to rescue Charudatta from execution by crucifixion ordered by the king. At about the same time, Dr. Christian Lindtner from Denmark identified the Buddhist story of “The Passion and Death of Gautama” found in the Sanghabhedavastu of the Mahaparinirvanasutra of the Buddhist Sarvastivadins as another source for the gospel passion narratives. After having shared and discussed with each other our discoveries, we have concluded that the Gautama-story was the source of Mrcchakatika and the evangelists used both Indian works in the composition of the gospel passion narratives.


14. The name “Maitreya” for beloved follower of Charudatta is intriguing. “Maitreya” means “lovable, friendly, and friend.” In the Fourth Gospel Jesus calls his disciples “friends.”


15. The bewildering kiss of betrayal seems to have been foreshadowed in Maitreya’s betrayal of the gold box in the Indian play; “Take it,” says Maitreya in his sleep. In the gospels, the sleeping disciples let the brigands steal Jesus.


16. According to the Fourth Gospel, the enemies of Jesus fell down at his feet when they came to arrest him. In the Mrchchakatika, only the sword of the executioner fall on the ground at the nick of time in the execution scene, which never takes place. Later in the play, the enemy Samsthanaka falls down at the feet of Charudatta.


17. The scene in which Charudatta forgives his mortal enemy Samsthanaka reminds me of Jesus’w words on the cross, “Father forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”


18. Matthew’s reference—in Jesus’ rebuke to Peter for drawing sword during his arrest—is interesting. In the Mrchchakatika, the one who would protect and rescue Charudatta from his enemies is a symbolic army, the army of spring, which is the literal meaning of the word Vasantasena.


19. There has been no satisfactory legal explanation for the handing over of Jesus by the Sanhedrin to Pilate; the Council claimed it lacked the authority to condemn a blasphemer to death when, in fact, it had the authority. Perhaps the Indian play gives the answer to this crux. The judge in the play lacked the authority to sentence a Brahmin to death. Therefore, he sent the case up to the king, who promptly sentences Charudatta to death, as Pilate does in the gospels.


20. Only Luke would send Jesus to King Herod Antipas during the trial. Here the role of King Herod is intriguing. According to the canonical gospels, it is Governor Pilate, the representative of Caesar, who pronounces the death sentence on Jesus. In this context, I have never been able to understand why Luke would dispatch Jesus to King Herod? According to one gospel, as in the Indian play, it is King Herod who orders Jesus to death. It is the Gospel of Peter!


21. In both traditions, enemies threaten the judge with dire consequences if the judge were to refuse to condemn the accused man to death.


22. In both traditions, the accused condemned to be impaled or crucified. In the Indian play, as in Deuteronomic practice, impaling is expected to take place only after execution. The gospels perhaps are alluding to the Roman form of impaling the live person. However, the Fourth Gospel appeals to the Deuteronomic code when Joseph of Arimathea goes to Pilate to ask Jesus’ body for burial!


23. The breaking of the legs of the crucified is referred to in both literary texts.


24. The Fourth Gospel provides an interesting but enigmatic explanation on the relationship between the high priests Annas and Caiaphas as in-laws—father-in-law and son-in-law. In the Indian play the evil Samsthanaka and the wicked king Palaka are brothers-in-law.


25. In both texts, there is reference to a titulus or inscription to be displayed on the dead body or the cross. We see the titulus on our crucifixes as INRI (Iesus Nazarenus Rex Iudaeorum—slightly different on Greek crosses, where rex becomes basileus--. Why would John insist on including Nazarenus/Aramaic Nazraya (heretic on account of blasphemy) as part of the titulus unlike the other evangelists who have only “king of the Jews” on the titulus? Let us ignore the linguistically untenable explanation that Nazarenus means “from Nazareth.” The Jewish authorities had already established the guilt of Jesus but refused to stone Jesus to death, as the Torah stipulates. My only explanation is that the pre-canonical narratives, which the gospel writers accepted, were following the lead of the Indian play. The Indian judge says, “A judge decides the guilt; a king decides the punishment.” In my opinion, this explanation is the best response to the crux mentioned above. This also explains why the Fourth Gospel includes heresy as one of the charges against Jesus to be included in the titulus.


26. The “field of blood” (hql dma), a truly Aramaic phrase with the quotation taken from Zechariah 11: 12-13, which is attributed erroneously to Jeremiah and not quoted faithfully by the evangelists has been a celebrated crux in the gospels. Then again Golgotha or Calvary is not a hill. I suspect that the gospel writers or the pre-canonical narrators were referring to the burning ground or burial ground where Charudatta was taken to be executed. Professor Lindtner is right in pointing out that the best explanation is found in the Buddhist Sangabhedavastu.


27. According to the gospels, Jesus was buried in a private garden exactly as Vasantasena of the Mrchchakatika was.


28. The appointment of Peter as the shepherd of all the sheep by Jesus in one of his poest-resurrection appearance is certainly reminiscent of the appointment of the Buddhist monk as the bishop or overseer of all Buddhist monasteries or viharas in the kingdom.


22. In both traditions, the accused condemned to be impaled or crucified. In the Indian play, as in Deuteronomic practice, impaling is expected to take place only after execution. The gospels perhaps are alluding to the Roman form of impaling the live person. However, the Fourth Gospel appeals to the Deuteronomic code when Joseph of Arimathea goes to Pilate to ask Jesus’ body for burial!


The Trial of Jesus and His Death on the Cross: Buddhist Sources of Gospel Narratives.pdf


For the last twenty years I have been studying the problem of the literary indebtedness of the New Testament to the vast collection of the pre-Christian Buddhist Scriptures. As a result, I was able to publish a book and a monograph a few years ago. All this time I had the hunch that there must be Buddhist parallels to the gospel narratives of the trial, death and resurrection of Jesus. A few years ago, I succeeded serendipitously in making a literary connection between the Sanskrit play Mrcchakatika (“:The Little Clay Cart”:), which is a dramatic enactment of the trial of Charudatta and the resurrection of the courtesan Vasantasena, who returns in the nick of time to rescue Charudatta from execution by crucifixion ordered by the king. At about the same time, Dr. Christian Lindtner from Denmark identified the Buddhist story of “:The Passion and Death of Gautama”: found in the Sanghabhedavastu of the Mahaparinirvanasutra of the Buddhist Sarvastivadins as another source for the gospel passion narratives. After having shared and discussed with each other our discoveries, we have concluded that the Gautama-story was the source of Mrcchakatika and the evangelists used both Indian works in the composition of the gospel passion narratives. The present study is a careful comparison of the gospel narratives with the Indian texts, leaving no doubt whatsoever in my mind that the gospel writers had made extensive use of these Indian texts either in the original or through their Greek/Aramaic imitations/translations.

South and Southeast Asian Buddhists (although it only became a custom later) added the quarter days in the lunar cycle to the list of monthly days of observance, establishing four Sabbath-like days each month (known as wan phra in Thailand

The other “wan phra” days are on the quarter phases of the moon. In all, there are 4 days a month when the monks don’t go out on their alms round and the local people go to the temple instead.


The four clusters (Wyl. 'du ba bzhi) are the three clusters plus the combination of all three.


FOUR DHYANAS RELATED TO FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS- TWO SETS OF FOURāna_in_Buddhism#Cessation_of_feelings_and_perceptions

According to Bronkhorst, the practice of the four dhyanas may have been an original contribution by Gautama Buddha to the religious practices of ancient India in response to the ascetic practices of the Jains.[5] According to Wynne, the attainment of the formless meditative absorption was incorporated from Brahmanical practices,[6][page needed] These practices were paired to mindfulness and insight, and given a new interpretation.[6][page needed] The stratification of particular samādhi experiences into the four jhānas seems to be a Buddhist innovation.[6][page needed] It was then borrowed and presented in an incomplete form in the Mokṣadharma, a part of the Mahābhārata.[7] Kalupahana argues that the Buddha "reverted to the meditational practices" he had learned from Ārāḍa Kālāma and Uddaka Rāmaputta.[8]


In the Mahasaccaka Sutta, dhyana is followed by insight into the four truths. The mention of the four noble truths as constituting "liberating insight" is probably a later addition.[13][14][3][page needed] Originally the practice of dhyana itself may have constituted the core liberating practice of early Buddhism, since in this state all "pleasure and pain" had waned.[2][page needed] According to Vetter,


[P]robably the word "immortality" (a-mata) was used by the Buddha for the first interpretation of this experience and not the term cessation of suffering that belongs to the four noble truths [...] the Buddha did not achieve the experience of salvation by discerning the four noble truths and/or other data. But his experience must have been of such a nature that it could bear the interpretation "achieving immortality".[15]


The Pāli canon describes eight progressive states of jhāna. Four are called meditations of form (rūpa jhāna), and four are formless meditations (arūpa jhāna).


The Rupa Jhānas[edit]

There are four stages of deep collectedness which are called the Rupa Jhāna (Fine-material Jhāna).


Qualities of the Four Rupa Jhanas[edit]

Main article: Rupajhana

For each Jhāna are given a set of qualities which are present in that jhana:[38]


First Jhāna — the five hindrances have completely disappeared and intense unified bliss remains. Only the subtlest of mental movement remains, perceivable in its absence by those who have entered the second jhāna. The ability to form unwholesome intentions ceases. The remaining qualities are: "directed thought, evaluation, rapture, pleasure, unification of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity & attention"

Second Jhāna — all mental movement utterly ceases. There is only bliss. The ability to form wholesome intentions ceases as well. The remaining qualities are: "internal assurance, rapture, pleasure, unification of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention"

Third Jhāna — one-half of bliss (joy) disappears. The remaining qualities are: "equanimity-pleasure, unification of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity & attention"

Fourth Jhāna — The other half of bliss (happiness) disappears, leading to a state with neither pleasure nor pain, which the Buddha said is actually a subtle form of happiness (more sublime than pīti and sukha). The breath is said to cease temporarily in this state. The remaining qualities are: "a feeling of equanimity, neither pleasure nor pain; an unconcern due to serenity of awareness; unification of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity & attention".[38]

The Arupa Jhānas[edit]

See also: Arūpajhāna and Formless Realm

Beyond the four jhānas lie four attainments, referred to in the early texts as aruppas. These are also referred to in commentarial literature as immaterial/the formless jhānas (arūpajhānas), also translated as The Formless Dimensions, in distinction from the first four jhānas (rūpa jhānas). In the Buddhist canonical texts, the word "jhāna" is never explicitly used to denote them, they are instead referred to as āyatana. However, they are sometimes mentioned in sequence after the first four jhānas (other texts. e.g. MN 121 treat them as a distinct set of attainments) and thus came to be treated by later exegetes as jhānas. The immaterial attainments have more to do with expanding, while the Jhanas (1–4) focus on concentration. The enlightenment of complete dwelling in emptiness is reached when the eighth jhāna is transcended.


The four formless jhanas are:


Dimension of Infinite Space – In this dimension the following qualities are "ferreted out":[38] "the perception of the dimension of the infinitude of space, singleness of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention".[38]

Dimension of Infinite Consciousness – In this dimension the following quailities are "ferreted out":[38] "the perception of the dimension of the infinitude of consciousness, unification of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention".[38]

Dimension of Nothingness – In this dimension the following qualities are "ferreted out":[38] "the perception of the dimension of nothingness, singleness of mind, contact, feeling, perception, intention, consciousness, desire, decision, persistence, mindfulness, equanimity, & attention"

Dimension of Neither Perception nor Non-Perception No qualities to be "ferreted out" are being mentioned for this dimension.[38]

Although the "Dimension of Nothingness" and the "Dimension of Neither Perception nor Non-Perception" are included in the list of nine Jhanas taught by the Buddha, they are not included in the Noble Eightfold Path. Noble Path number eight is "Samma Samadhi" (Right Concentration), and only the first four Jhanas are considered "Right Concentration". If he takes a disciple through all the Jhanas, the emphasis is on the "Cessation of Feelings and Perceptions" rather than stopping short at the "Dimension of Neither Perception nor Non-Perception".ītyasamutpāda


The pre-Buddhist Vedic era theories on causality mention four types of causality, all of which Buddhism rejected.[17][18] The four Vedic era causality theories in vogue were: [1] sayam katam (attakatam, self causation): this theory posits that there is no external agent (God) necessary for a phenomenon, there is svadha (inner energy) in nature or beings that lead to creative evolution, the cause and the effect are in the essence of the evolute and inseparable (found in the Vedic and particularly Upanishadic proto-Hindu schools); [2] param katam (external causation): posits that something external (God, fate, past karma or purely natural determinism) causes effects (found in materialistic schools like Charvaka, as well as fate-driven schools such as Ajivika); [3] sayam-param katam (internal and external causation): combination of the first two theories of causation (found in some Jainism, theistic proto-Hindu schools); [4] asayam-aparam katam (neither internal nor external causation): this theory denies direct determinism (ahetu) and posits fortuitous origination, asserting everything is a manifestation of a combination of chance (found in some proto-Hindu schools).[17][18]


For Buddhists, Bodh Gaya is the most important of the main four pilgrimage sites related to the life of Gautama Buddha, the other three being Kushinagar, Lumbini, and Sarnath. In 2002, Mahabodhi Temple, located in Bodh Gaya, became a UNESCO World Heritage Site.[3]


Also referred to as Isipatana, this city is mentioned by the Buddha as one of the four places of pilgrimage to which his devout followers should visit, if they wanted to visit a place for that reason.[1] It was also the site of the Buddha's Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta, which was his first teaching after attaining enlightenment, in which he taught the four noble truths and the teachings associated with it.


It is one of the four avijahitatthānāni (unchanging spots), the others being the bodhi-pallanka, the spot at the gate of Sankassa, where the Buddha first touched the earth on his return from Tāvatimsa, and the site of the bed in the Gandhakuti in Jetavana[19


Fourth Turning[edit]

The Huayen school of Chinese Buddhism considered the Tathāgatagarbha doctrine a fourth turning, with the third turning comprising only the Yogachara school.[5] In addition, Vajrayana schools sometimes refer to tantra as the "fourth turning."


Upayas (diplomacy)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Upayas is a Sanskrit word that means "approaches", "to come into any state or condition" and "to come near or towards".[1] It also refers to methods of diplomacy found in Hinduism and Jainism texts.[2][3][4]


Kautilya mentioned four Upayas - Sama, Dana or Dama, Danda and Bheda as ways to reach to a solution in state politics to avoid conflicts and war situations.[2] This phrase is also commonly used when you need to find a solution to a problem anyhow. 1.Sama, the first step, means conciliation or alliances.When the situation of conflict arises between states, the firsts step is to talk.[2] 2.Dana, the second, means gifts or compensation. Sometimes it is referred to as Dama, price, it means to pay the value. [2] 3.Bheda, the third, means rupture or divide and rule. To create conflict within the opposite state [2] 4.Danda refers to the last step, that is force or armaments. To take up war with the opposite state.[2] An article on Institute for Defense Studies and Analyses website states that the 20th-century power-politics theoretician Hans J. Morgenthau suggests similar four methods in a struggle for balance of power: Divide and Rule; Compensation; Armaments; and Alliances.[2]


These four approaches are found in the Hindu Itihasa (epics) and the Dharmasastras, as well as the Jain text Nitivakyamitra.[2]



Buddhist cosmology is the description of the shape and evolution of the Universe according to the Buddhist scriptures and commentaries.

It consists of temporal and spatial cosmology, the temporal cosmology being the division of the existence of a 'world' into four discrete moments (the creation, duration, dissolution, and state of being dissolved, this does not seem to be a canonical division however). The spatial cosmology consists of a vertical cosmology, the various planes of beings, their bodies, characteristics, food, lifespan, beauty and a horizontal cosmology, the distribution of these world-systems into an "apparently" infinite sheet of universes. The existence of world-periods (moments, kalpas), is well attested to by the Buddha.[1][2]


Unlike pinyin, Cangjie is based on the graphological aspect of the characters: each basic, graphical unit is represented by a basic character component, 24 in all, each mapped to a particular letter key on a standard QWERTY keyboard. An additional, "difficult character" function is mapped to the X key. Within the keystroke-to-character representations, there are four subsections of characters: the Philosophical Set (corresponding to the letters 'A' to 'G' and representing the sun, the moon and the five elements), the Strokes Set (corresponding to the letters 'H' to 'N' and representing the brief and subtle strokes), the Body-Related Set (corresponding to the letters 'O' to 'R' and representing various parts of human anatomy), and the Shapes Set (corresponding to the letters 'S' to 'Y' and representing complex and encompassing character forms).

The Four-Corner Method (simplified Chinese: 四角号码检字法; traditional Chinese: 四角號碼檢字法; pinyin: sì jiǎo hàomǎ jiǎnzì fǎ; literally: "four corner code lookup-character method") is a character-input method used for encoding Chinese characters into either a computer or a manual typewriter, using four or five numerical digits per character. The Four-Corner Method is also known as the Four-Corner System.


The four tones of guo as written in characters and Gwoyeu Romatzyh. Note the spelling differences, highlighted in red, for each tone.


According to Fisher (1970), there are four phases of decision making: orientation, conflict, emergence, and reinforcement.[92] As a communicative approach, the orientation stage is where the members involved are becoming acquainted both with themselves as well as the problem at hand. The conflict stage is where the problem is analyzed with several possibilities presented to resolve the problem. Upon discussing these possibilities, the emergence phase becomes known when a decision is made about which solution is to be used. The reinforcement stage is the supportive of the decision.[93] These phases are not without objection from many theorists in the field. Morley and Stephenson (1977) claim that such a staged model of decision making is not so rigid between phases and varies depending upon the types of decisions made.[94]


The four Buddhist councils can be considered as the four mile stones in the history of Buddhism. If the Four Noble Truths formed the core of the Buddha's teachings, these four Buddhist meetings formed the core of its early history. They helped the followers of the Buddhist Order to sort out the differences amongst them in a democratic and collective manner. Where rapprochement was not possible the Councils defined the boundaries by organizing the Canonical texts and fomralizing their interpretation.



In the Mahaparinirvana Sutra, the Buddha speak of four attributes which make up nirvana. Writing on this Mahayana understanding of nirvana, William Edward Soothill and Lewis Hodous state:

‘The Nirvana Sutra claims for nirvana the ancient ideas of permanence, bliss, personality, purity in the transcendental realm. Mahayana declares that Hinayana, by denying personality in the transcendental realm, denies the existence of the Buddha. In Mahayana, final nirvana is both mundane and transcendental, and is also used as a term for the Absolute.[131]


In this Kalpa, We already have four Buddhas and there will be one more Buddha. That's why this Kalpa is called Bhadda-kappa.


Extracted it from here.


In the current kalpa, it is said we are fortunate to have experienced five Buddhas. Kusanda Buddha, Konagamana Buddha, Kasyapsa Buddha and Buddha Shakyamuni. The Buddha of the future is called Maitreya Buddha.

One Mahakalpa (Great Kalpa) is subdivided into four Asankhyeya-Kalpas (or simply called Kalpas):



Kalpa of formation (Vivarta)

Kalpa of existence (Vivatasiddha)

Kalpa of destruction (Samvarta)

Kalpa of emptiness (Samvartasiddha)

Each of the four Kalpas is subdivided into twenty Antarakalpa (Small Kalpa), so that a Mahakalpa consists of 80 Antarakalpa.

Four Tetrads And Four Foundations

by PETER CARLSON on APRIL 23, 2015

During this talk, Peter reviewed the four groups of four stanzas in the Anapanasati Sutta as they relate to the four foundations of mindfulness.  The four groups of stanzas are called the four tetrads.  The intention in this presentation is to foster an integration of mindfulness of breathing with the four foundations as they appear in the sutta.


Next week’s discussion will explore practical applications of mindfulness of breathing to the cultivation of the four foundations.


The next post will contain the notes prepared relative to this talk


There are four extant collections of āgamas, and one for which we have only references and fragments (the Kṣudrakāgama). The four extant collections are preserved in their entirety only in Chinese translation (āgama: 阿含經), although small portions of all four have recently been discovered in Sanskrit, and portions of four of the five āgamas are preserved in Tibetan.[7] The five Āgamas are:


Some schools, notably the Sarvāstivāda, recognized only four Āgamas—they had a "Kṣudraka" which they did not consider to be an "Āgama."[17][19] Others—including even the Dharmaguptaka, according to some contemporary scholars—preferred to term it a ""Kṣudraka Piṭaka." As with its Pāḷi counterpart, the Kṣudraka Āgama appears to have been a miscellany, and was perhaps never definitively established among many early schools.

Although McRae has reservations about the division of Chan's history in phases or periods,[7] he nevertheless distinguishes four phases in the history of Chan:[8]

Proto-Chan (c. 500–600)

Chan developed in multiple locations in northern China. It was based on the practice of dhyana, and is connected to the figures of Bodhiharma and Huike. Its principal text is the Two Entrances and Four Practices, attributed to Bodhidharma.[9]

Early Chan (c. 600–900)

Chan took its first clear contours. Prime figures are the fifth patriarch Daman Hongren (601–674), his dharma-heir Yuquan Shenxiu (606?–706), the sixth patriarch Huineng (638–713), antagonist of the quintessential Platform Sutra, and Shenhui (670–762), whose propaganda elevated Huineng to the status of sixth patriarch. Main factions were the Northern School, Southern School and Oxhead School.[10]

Middle Chan (c. 750–1000)

Iconoclastic masters became to prominence. Prime figures are Mazu Daoyi (709–788), Shitou Xiqian (710–790), Linji Yixuan (d. 867), and Xuefeng Yicun (822–908). Main factions were the Hongzhou school and the Hubei faction[note 1] An important text is the Anthology of the Patriarchal Hall (952), which gives a great amount of "encounter stories", and the well-known genealogy of the Chan school.[13]

Song-Dynasty Chan (c. 950–1300)

Chan took its definitive shape, including the picture of the "golden age" of the Chan of the Tang Dynasty, and the use of koans for individual study and meditation. Key figures were Dahui Zonggao (1089–1163), who introduced the Hua Tou practice, and Hongzhi Zhengjue (1091–1157), who emphasized shikantaza. Main factions were the Linji school and the Caodong school. Classic koan collections, such as the Blue Cliff Record, were assembled[14] and reflect the influence of the literati on the development of Chan.[15][16] In this phase Chan is transported to Japan, and exerts a great influence on Korean Seon via Jinul.


The entrance of practice includes the following four increments:


Practice of the retribution of enmity: to accept all suffering as the fruition of past transgressions, without enmity or complaint

Practice of the acceptance of circumstances: to remain unmoved even by good fortune, recognizing it as evanescent

Practice of the absence of craving: to be without craving, which is the source of all suffering

Practice of accordance with the Dharma: to eradicate wrong thoughts and practice the six perfections, without having any "practice".[46]


"Entrance of practice" deals with enlightenment through different daily practices. In the section on the latter, the four practices are listed as being at the core of Bodhidharma's teaching. These are;

The "practice of retribution of enmity",

The "practice of acceptance of circumstances",

The "practice of the absence of craving",

The "practice of accordance with the Dharma".


In Taiwan, these four masters are popularly referred to as the "Four Heavenly Kings" of Taiwanese Buddhism, with their respective organizations Dharma Drum Mountain, Chung Tai Shan, Tzu Chi, and Fo Guang Shan being referred to as the "Four Great Mountains".[101][102]

FIRST FOUR NIKAYA DIFFERENT Richard Gombrich thinks most of the first four nikayas (see below) go back to the Buddha, in content but not in form.[1 The first four nikayas and more than half of the fifth have been translated by the Pali Text Society[1]. The first four have also been translated in the Teachings of the Buddha series by Wisdom Publications.


A Mahājanapada (Sanskrit: महाजनपद, lit. 'great realm', from maha, "great", and janapada "foothold of a tribe", "country") is one of the sixteen kingdoms or oligarchic republics that existed in ancient India from the sixth centuries BCE to fourth centuries BCE. Two of them were most probably 'ganas' or republics — and others had forms of monarchy. Ancient Buddhist texts like the Anguttara Nikaya[1] make frequent reference to sixteen great kingdoms and republics which had evolved and flourished in a belt stretching from Gandhara in the northwest to Anga in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent and included parts of the trans-Vindhyan region,[2] prior to the rise of Buddhism in India.[3]


The country of the Avantis was an important kingdom of western India and was one of the four great monarchies in India in the post era of Mahavira and Buddha, the other three being Kosala, Vatsa and Magadha

Buddhism four turnings RELATIONSHIP FOUR AND THREE

Introduction to the Fourth Turning of Buddhism

Buddhism has, of all the major religions, always had a very self-reflexive understanding of itself as growing, evolving, unfolding. Nowhere is this better seen than in Buddhism’s own notion of “Three (or Four) Turnings,” the idea that Buddhadharma itself (Buddhist Truth) has gone through three or four major turnings or evolutionary unfoldings, each adding to (but including) the previous turning.


The First Turning was represented by Gautama Buddha himself, the founder of the religion. It came to be expressed most centrally in the Four Noble Truths: 1) Life as we know it is suffering. 2) The cause of suffering is grasping. 3) To end grasping is to end suffering. 4) There is a way to end grasping, namely, the Eight-Fold Way (right view, right intention, right speech, right actions, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentrative awareness).


The different bardos can be categorized into four or six:


The Four Bardos


This section contains Tibetan script. Without proper Tibetan rendering support configured, you may see other symbols instead of Tibetan script.

the natural bardo of this life (Skt. jatyantarābhava; Tib. རང་བཞིན་སྐྱེ་བའི་བར་དོ་; Wyl. rang bzhin skye ba'i bar do) which begins when a connection with a new birth is first made and continues until the conditions that will certainly lead to death become manifest.

the painful bardo of dying (Skt. mumūrṣāntarābhava; Tib. འཆི་ཁ་གནད་གཅོད་ཀྱི་བར་དོ་; Wyl. 'chi kha gnad gcod kyi bar do) which begins when these conditions manifest and continues until the 'inner respiration' ceases and the luminosity of the dharmakaya dawns.

the luminous bardo of dharmata (Skt. dharmatāntarābhava; Tib. ཆོས་ཉིད་འོད་གསལ་གྱི་བར་དོ་; Wyl. chos nyid 'od gsal gyi bar do) which lasts from the moment the dharmakaya luminosity dawns after death and continues until the visions of precious spontaneous perfection are complete.

the karmic bardo of becoming (Skt. bhāvāntarābhava; Tib. སྲིད་པ་ལས་ཀྱི་བར་དོ་; Wyl. srid pa las kyi bar do) which lasts from the moment the bardo body is created and continues until the connection with a new rebirth is made.

The Six Bardos

The four above with the addition of:


5. the bardo of meditation (Skt. samādhyantarābhava; Tib. བསམ་གཏན་གྱི་བར་དོ་, Wyl. bsam gtan gyi bar do)

6. the bardo of dreaming (Skt. svapanāntarābhava; Tib. རྨི་ལམ་གྱི་བར་དོ་, Wyl. rmi lam gyi bar do)

These two bardos are part of the natural bardo of this life.


‘Aum mani padme hum’ is a four symbol, six syllable mantra of Tibetan Buddhism. Considered the mantra of Buddha, this powerful invocation is said to contain the essence of all Buddhist teachings.


The ‘aum mani padme hum’ mantra stands for universal compassionate wisdom and method applied to the macrocosm of surroundings through the microcosm of the self. It is a matrix of four; a set of symbols that reflects the integration of duality and polarity — the universal and individual, through and into each other, like metaphysical mirrors. The power of ‘aum mani padme hum’ is said to be activated by a fifth element, shri or hri, which refers to divinity itself.


‘Aum’ (also spelled ‘Om’) refers to consciousness in its four states and, specifically in this mantra, it symbolizes the universal macrocosm. ‘Mani’ means jewel and stands for the jewel that is the compassionate being. Within mani are the three jewels that are the Buddha, the Dharma (Buddhist teaching), and those around who understand the Dharma. Together they make the fourth jewel of integration called vajra. ‘Padme’ means lotus flower (symbolized with four leaves) and in this mantra symbolizes method and contains four aspects, yantra (philosophy), mantra (sound), mudra (physical positioning), and tantra (integration). ‘Hum’ represents the notion of please or gratitude, as well as the microcosm and integration. It contains four (and sometimes five) parts; earth, air, water, fire (and ethereal) elements and represents the five forms of awareness and the four foundations of mindfulness.

Seed of Buddha Meditation

One of my favorite meditations relates to the four dimensions of geometry, but is extracted from Buddhist lessons. It is one of the most powerful meditations I have learned and as I learned it, Buddha himself practiced and taught this meditation. I learned this meditation from a Tibetan Buddhist monk from Nepal before I considered the four dimensions of geometry applied to meditation. On later examination however the components of the meditation relate to the four dimensions of geometry.


This meditation is direct and simple, but can lead to infinitely complex profound lessons. The profundity of each of the ideas in this meditation cannot be understated. And each of the concepts has been elaborated on endlessly for centuries since Buddha, and so the presentation here is of course a simplification of the ideas and processes that might be endlessly explored and refined. And that is what meditation is all about really, our own personal inward exploration and refinement.


To begin, sit in a comfortable cross legged position on a meditation pillow. Sit for a time to simply settle into absorption and relaxation, focusing on the breath. The rhythm of the following meditation consists of mindfulness of an idea followed by mindfulness of no idea, where as much as possible we think on nothingness. The nothingness gives us a chance to relax, compared to processing the series of ideas which can all be quite intense. The process can be done in any time period. The point is to cover each idea as deeply as can be, given time or mental state circumstances.


The meditation is formed from important Buddhist concepts. Many meditations are derived from such teachings, Buddhist and otherwise, so that there are lessons in a sense for the secular, and meditation practitioners.


The first part of the meditation consists of concentration on The Four Thoughts; precious human body, impermanence, karma and samsara. This is done by focusing on the ideas through personal experiences and/or universal understandings.


The Four Thoughts not so coincidentally relate to the four dimensions of geometry. The point is symbolizes the individual precious human body, the line symbolizes impermanence, karma illustrates the circular exchange of energy and Samsara relates to the volume.


The precious human body idea essentially comes from the notion that every being is precious for spontaneous Buddhahood could happen at any time, yet humans are particularly well-endowed, for our precious human body is capable of enlightenment in a processed manner. After finding example of how we or others are precious, come to the point of gentle concentration on relaxation. Breathe in a relaxed manner after the contemplation on precious human body then proceed on to the impermanence idea, and then the pause again for gentle concentration on relaxation, and so on, taking however much time is required.


Next is Karma. Most people are familiar with the cause and effect universal law of Karma. However the final thought of the Four Thoughts, Samsara, is less widely known. Samsara is the plane of existence of suffering, of birth and death, we are all in.


The second part of the meditation utilizes concentration on The Four Immeasurables in the same pattern of mindful focus followed by relaxation. There is a modification of the Four Immeasurables order of operation in the meditation, however. They are traditionally presented as; love for self, love for others, love for the happiness of others, and love for all beings in equanimity. In this meditation process begin by focusing on love for all beings in equanimity and end with love for self.


The Four Immeasureables, like the Four Thoughts, are not so abstractly symbolic for and related to the four dimensions of geometry. Love for self is symbolic of individual point, love for others is symbolic for the linear connection, love for the happiness of others is circular and all-connecting and love for all beings in equanimity is voluminous and all-inclusive.



Each step of the process can take as long as you like or as long as it takes to come to a realization through the first four concepts, send love through the second set of concepts and complete the Buddha Breathing that is inhaling suffering and exhaling healing as a seed of Buddha.

Geometry of Energy

Geometry of Energy

(Image by Ethan Indigo) Permission Details DMCA

In his book 'The Geometry of Energy: How to Meditate', author Ethan Indigo Smith explores meditation and meditative energies through the sacred dimensions of geometry. Simple and profound, it is an empowering four-step meditation designed to lead to individuation, self-development, and an enhanced understanding of energy and vibration.


Useful to meditation newcomers and longtime practitioners alike, 'The Geometry of Energy' provides insights into a variety of meditative processes for psychological and spiritual cleansing and enhancement.

The Geometry of Energy explores meditation and subtle energy through the four dimensions of geometry -points, lines, planes and solids. The four dimensions of geometry in relation to meditation and energy illustrate the true sacredness of sacred geometry. The Geometry of Energy enhances comprehension of meditation and conceptualization of energy.

The four dimensions of geometry provide a formula to meditation and energy comprehension. The Geometry of Energy is an empowering four step meditation presented through meditation lessons from across the globe. Understanding meditation and energy by way of the four dimensions promotes individuation through meditation.

The Geometry of Energy utilizes the four dimensions of geometry to enable a higher understanding of meditation practices, towards refinement of self. Through the simple and sacred four dimensions of geometry, understanding various processes for psychologically and spiritually cleansing our being are constructed. The Geometry of Energy enhances understanding of meditation and energies through mathematical constructs as related to spiritual subjects enabling more results in meditation.


The Geometry of Energy is a meditation instruction and exploration of meditative energies through the four dimensions of geometry. In its simplicity and profundity is an empowering four step meditation leading to individuation as well as an enhanced understanding of energy. The simple and sacred four dimensions of geometry lead to understanding meditation processes and energies for psychologically and spiritually cleansing our thinking and being. The process of meditation enables individuation, distinguished self-development.


The Geometry of Energy utilizes the four dimensions of geometry to enable a higher understanding of meditation and energy through eclectic, esoteric, and yet simple related practices, each geared towards self-refinement. The Geometry of Energy enhances understanding of meditative energies through mathematical constructs as they are related to spiritual subjects. The four dimensions of geometry, the four ways to understand objects and energies, are as points, lines, planes and solids. Circles are the highest form of a plane, and spheres are the highest form of solid.


Points can represent anything, up to and including things that have no size. A point requires just one point to depict, obviously. A line requires a minimum of two points to depict though infinite more points can be integrated. A line can be any width, up to and including no width at all. A shape, or plane, might be no width at all and requires a minimum of three points to depict, though infinite more points can be integrated for different shapes. The fourth geometrical understanding of space is a solid, a solid that might have no weight. A solid requires a minimum of four points to depict making a four sided pyramid, though of course, an infinite number of points can be integrated depending on the shape.


Geometrical rules relate to and address fundamentals of energy as well. The idea of points without size, lines without width, shapes without height, and solids without weight address mathematical concepts and meditative energy constructs too.


Geometry means measurement of earth. The geometry of energy uses the four dimensions of measuring earth to measure earthen energy. The four dimensions of geometry have a magical quality to them, in that points may take up no space, lines may have no width, shapes may have no height and solids may have no weight. Energy forms in the same manner as the dimensions of geometry. Energy exists, but it may take up no space, have no width, no height and no weight.


My experiences practicing different meditations and meditative movements led me to find correlative dynamics in a wide range of practices which are reflective of energies that coincide with or directly reflect the four dimensions of geometry. The shared dynamics are so powerful and related to so many diverse understandings, and so little had been written on the four dimensions of geometry relative to how much has been written of sacred geometry in total that I had to meditate on and elaborate on the subject.


The diagram to the right shows the growth of Tibetan Buddhist traditions. The four main ones overlap markedly, such that "about eighty percent or more of the features of the Tibetan schools are the same".[1] Differences include the use of apparently, but not actually, contradictory terminology, opening dedications of texts to different deities and whether phenomena are described from the viewpoint of an unenlightened practitioner or of a Buddha.[1] On questions of philosophy they have no fundamental differences, according to the Fourteenth Dalai Lama [2] The Tibetan adjectival suffix -pa is translatable as "-ist" in English.


These first four major schools are sometimes said to constitute the Nyingma "Old Translation" and Sarma "New Translation" traditions, the latter following from the historical Kadam lineage of translations and tantric lineages. Another common but trivial differentiation is into the Yellow Hat (Gelug) and Red Hat (non-Gelug) sects, a division that mirrors the distinction between the schools involved in the Rimé movement versus the one that did not, the Gelug. The correspondences are as follows:


Marpa received mahamudra and the Six Yogas from his guru Naropa and from Maitripa (also known as Avadhutipa), who held a special lineage of their transmission from Nagarjuna and Saraha. All these teachings make four main areas of mastery, for which the Kagyu is renowned. They are:


1. Mahamudra


2. Candali Yoga


3. Clear Light - a general term for the last five of the six yogas mentioned above


4. Karma Mudra - the reconciling of all subjective and objective aspects of consciousness.



The entirety of what Marpa had brought from India was passed on to the great yogi Milarépa , who had a sun-like disciple (Gampopa), a moon-like disciple (Réchungpa) and twenty-five others, like stars. Gampopa had also been heir to the Khadampa teachings of Atisha. Blending these two streams together as one, he established the basis for the Kagyu lineage as it exists today. All disciples are given instruction in the Khadampa teachings, known as sutra mahamudra, and the gifted ones among them go on to receive the vajrayana mahamudra, practising the Six Yogas on a basis of tantras of the anuttara yoga tantra class, usually those of Hévajra, Chakrasamvara and Vajra Varahi. The Kagyu tradition does not use the nine yana template of the Nyingma but instead classifies the fourth level of tantra, i.e. anuttara yoga tantra, into three sections: mother tantras, father tantras, and non-dual tantras. The illustrious ninth Karmapa explained this, writing:


There are many different types of Chö practice, often with specific purposes such as healing the sick or erasing the shadow of death cast by proximity and attachment to the dying. They all involve 'killing demons' but one should understand that the demons are the four Mara: the four main existential problems that cause suffering, i.e.


being composed of the five aggregates which together form body and mind (skandha mara)


the mind being polluted by selfish desire, animosity, jealousy and the other mind poisons (klesa mara)


being attached to the details of one's existence and existence in general (deva's son mara)


being unable to accept change (lord of death mara).




The vows of individual liberation are taken in four steps. A lay person may take the five Upāsaka and Upāsikā vows (Tibetan dge snyan, dge snyan ma "approaching virtue"). The next step is to enter the pabbajja or monastic way of life (Srt: pravrajya, Tib. rab byung pronounced rabjung), which includes wearing monk's or nun's robes. After that, one can become a samanera or samaneri "novice" (Skt. śrāmaṇera, śrāmaṇeri, Tib. dge tshul, dge tshul ma). The last and final step is to take all the vows of a bhikkhu or bhukkhuni "fully ordained monastic" (Sanskrit: bhikṣu, bhikṣuṇī, Tib. dge long, dge long ma).

Four Treasures, the scholars

The painter and calligrapher had four basic tools: brush, inkstick, inkstone and paper, all of which were manufactured with the utmost care. Brushes were made from animal hair graded into a sharp point and glued into bamboo or reed holders. Ink was derived from soot and animal glue, cooked, pounded, hardened and matured in often elaborately decorated moulds. This ink stick, lasting for years, was highly prized by artists and calligraphers, who ground it themselves with water on a jade or slate inkstone, while meditating on the work ahead. Paper, invented in China long before anywhere else, was used both as a ground and as a backing to works on silk.

The Four Scholarly Accomplishments

In Imperial China, a well educated scholar was expected to be skilled in four arts:


Qin (the guqin)

Qi (the game of Go)

Shu (calligraphy)

Hua (painting)

Symbols of these accomplishments are often found in decorative art as checkered chess tables, brushes, silk scrolls, and the Chinese zither Qin (Guqin). Also called, The four signs of a scholar.

Four Modernizations

Program launched in 1978 by Deng Xiaoping for economic reforms in industry, agriculture, science and defense. Chinese porcelain production in Jiangxi province is encouraged to new innovations through the department of Light Industry.

Four Masters of the Yuan dynasty

Huang Gongwang is together with Ni Zan, Wu Zhen and Wang Meng called the Four Masters of the Yuan dynasty (1206–1368). They are considered the four most oustanding artists of the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368). Together they greatly developed landscape painting.

The Four Elements

The four elements are metal, wood, water and fire, which are everywhere. See also The Eight Trigrams






The consequence of the Fall were catastrophic. Satan took God's position in the Four Positions of the family unit.



The world is ruled by false "love." Satan is the "god of this world" (II Cor. 4:4). The existence of Satan and the belief in negative spiritual forces influencing our lives has been unpopular to modern educated Western people. This is a recent belief in human history. Western man is naive today and focuses on the temporal, the material, the human rather than the eternal, the spiritual, the divine.

Because of the Fall, mankind lost its original nature and gained a fallen nature which has four major aspects. First, Lucifer didn't see Adam and Eve from God's point of view so fallen people generally do not see from God's point of view. Saints and heros are often misunderstood and persecuted.


Second, Lucifer left the position God gave him, consequently people in this world frequently don't live up to their positions and disregard their obligations and responsibilities. An example would be a parent who leaves his small child to go to a bar to drink.


Third, we desire to dominate others. Lucifer reversed the order of dominion. He was to be ruled by Eve. But he dominated her. Eve's role was to be under Adam's dominion, but she dominated him. The Fall is the origin for all the oppression we see in the fallen world.


The fourth aspect of fallen nature is multiplication of sin. Eve multiplied her crime by seducing Adam. Adam multiplied sin by uniting with Eve. In the Fallen world people often seduce others to sin. Fallen nature always seeks to share guilt and multiply bad actions.



義 is the traditional form of 义 which means ‘Righteousness’ in Chinese. The top half of the character is 羊 (Yáng) which means “Lamb” and the bottom half of the character is 我 (Wǒ) which means “I”.