Saturday, February 12, 2011

Sunday - February 13, 2011

Good Morning and Welcome to the YorkieBrigade Chapel, a place where all are equally welcome; a place we can share our prayers and provide support and encouragement for each other.

This morning we will talk about religion in general, and how each religion is very similar despite it's differences. Through exploring our differences we find that we are very much alike after all, regardless of who or what we are or where we were born.

How old is religion? Older than we can even trace. Hinduism is probably the oldest documented religion, at least 5000 years old and some historians have it as old as 20,000 years. Hindus are known to show respect, even perform worship, to certain animals and things in nature (e.g. trees, rivers etc.), and they often practice vegetarianism by avoiding eating meat.

Gautama Siddhartha (a Hindu) became a Buddha in the 6th Century B.C. He founded a new religion called Buddhism that is derived from Hinduism

Buddhism looks upon life in the universe as a totality which has by itself a right to exist unhindered, with no threats of destruction from outside to serve the needs of any single person or group, whether they be under the direction of any human or divine authority.

Buddhism also offers definite and positive instructions with regard to the manner in which humans should develop universal loving kindness towards all living things that exist in the universe, whether in close proximity or at a distance, seen or unseen, large or small, fierce or timid.

Buddhism, in a book called the Manual of Good Living or Dhammapada, this idea is expressed as follows.

All living things fear being beaten with clubs.
All living things fear being put to death.
Putting oneself in the place of the other,
Let no one kill nor cause another to kill.
(Dhammapada verse no. 129)*

Judaism, founded by Abraham, is estimated to be approximately 4000 years old .

Christianity includes Judaism which started over 3000 BC so Christianity predates Buddhism by over 2500 years, however Buddha predates Christ by 500 years. Christianity is incomplete without the old testament, which was written by the Jews.

The Christian Bible (sometimes known as the Holy Bible) is divided into two parts. The first is called the Old Testament, containing the 39 books of Hebrew Scripture, and the second portion is called the New Testament, containing a set of 27 books.

Islam, which comes from an Arabic root word meaning "peace" and "submission", teaches that one can only find peace in one's life by submitting to Almighty God (Allah) in heart, soul and deed. The same Arabic root word gives us "Salaam alaykum," ("Peace be with you"), the universal Muslim greeting. ("Peace be with you" is also said in Christian practice). Islam began in the 7th Century with Muhammed. Muhammad did not claim to be the leader of a new religion. He said he was reviving an old and pure tradition that he believed that Christians and Jewish fell away from.

Hindus and Buddhists believe in reincarnation until they reach Nirvanah by living a perfect life; Christians, Jews and Muslims believe in the Day of Judgment and heaven and hell. All religions studied today believe that one should take responsibility for their actions and the consequences of same.

Organized religion, regardless of the label it wears, is a rule book for living. In each of the religions mentioned above we find the concept of "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you" a constant.

Here, in our Yorkie Brigade Chapel, we encourage all of our parishioners to follow this concept commonly known as "The Golden Rule". Whether Jewish or Christian, Hindu, Buddhist or Muslim...or even if one doesn't believe in a power higher than themselves, we all wish to be the best that we can be, and we encourage others to do the same. We all say to our neighbors "Peace be with you!", and respond by saying "And also with you!" Or as Buddha would say "May all beings be well and happy' [ Sabbe sattĂ  bhavantu sukhitattĂ  ].

Thank you, God, for bringing us together on this our third Sunday of Chapel. Thank you for continuing to provide us with inspiration to continue to come together with Prayer, Positivity and Love.


Go in peace, and remember "The Group that Prays Together, Stays Together!".

Please remember to pick up your personal belongings from the cloakroom as you leave. Coffee and donuts in the Great Hall graciously provided by The Dogters of the American Revolution in honor of our President's Day. Valentine's Day Sire-Puppy Sweetheart Square Dance tomorrow night also in the Great Hall. Wear your red and pink collars and get ready to Boogie!


Lt. Chaplain - YorkieBrigade Chapel

©1985 Buddhist Publication Society.
From The Dhammapada: The Buddha's Path of Wisdom, translated from the Pali by Acharya Buddharakkhita, with an Introduction by Bhikkhu Bodhi (Kandy: Buddhist Publication Society, 1985). Transcribed from the print edition in 1996 by a volunteer under the auspices of the DharmaNet Transcription Project, with the kind permission of the BPS.
This Access to Insight edition is ©1996–2011.

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