Great Compassion is Untiring and Illumines Me Always

Heartbreaking news arrives daily from the Middle East, the war in Ukraine rages on, and gun violence in America continues unabated, reminding us that the darkness of greed, anger, and ignorance continue to prevent the people of this world from recognizing our shared humanity.  In discouraging times like this, I find comfort and hope for the future in gathering with friends from other religious traditions to affirm our shared wishes for a world in which peace and kindness prevail.  Recent conversations with Muslim, Jewish, Hindu, and Christian friends have reminded me that many of the world’s religious traditions observe festivals that celebrate light transforming darkness, such as Ramadan, Hanukkah, Christmas, and Diwali.

In the Buddhist traditions of Japan, Bodhi Day, the day of Sakyamuni Buddha’s enlightenment, is observed on December 8.  This service is a time when we reflect on Siddhartha Gautama’s heroic journey in search of the light of clear wisdom that shines through the darkness of ignorance and mistaken thinking. 

In the traditional telling of the story of the Buddha’s enlightenment, it is said that as the moment of his awakening approached, a brilliant light shone forth from the place where he sat in meditation.  When Mara, the Demon King of Illusion, saw this light, he knew that Siddhartha was about to transcend the world of illusion and break free from Mara’s control in the unending cycle of birth and death.  Mara came at Siddhartha with the full force of his army of illusion in the hope of disrupting Siddhartha’s meditation. 

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Bodhi Day Service: How to Catch a Snake

Sunday, December 3, 2023

We warmly welcome you to join us in person at the San Mateo Buddhist Temple for our Bodhi Day Service on Sunday, December 3. Bodhi Day is our annual celebration of Sakyamuni Buddha’s attainment of enlightenment seated beneath the Bodhi Tree. As we revisit the traditional story of Sakyamuni Buddha’s enlightenment, Rev. Adams will offer some reflections on the Buddha’s teaching that listening to the Dharma requires the same care and focused attention needed to catch a poisonous snake.

Schedule
8:30 a.m. Shōya Raisan Chanting
9:00 a.m. Taiso Morning Exercise
9:30 a.m. Bodhi Day Service
10:30 a.m. Dharma Discussion

To join us via Zoom for this Dharma Service CLICK HERE and sign up for “Live Broadcast of Services”.

Bodhi Day Service

Sunday, December 4, 2022

We warmly welcome you to join us in person at the San Mateo Buddhist Temple for our Bodhi Day Service on Sunday, December 4. Bodhi Day is our annual celebration of Sakyamuni Buddha’s attainment of enlightenment seated beneath the Bodhi Tree. It is a special occasion for us to reflect upon how the truth to which the Buddha awakened over 2,500 years ago in Bodhgaya, India continues offer precious guidance for our lives today.

Schedule
8:30 a.m. Shōya Raisan Chanting
9:00 a.m. Taiso Morning Exercise with instructor Juliet Bost
9:30 a.m. Bodhi Day Service
10:30 a.m. Dharma Discussion

To join us via Zoom for this Dharma Service CLICK HERE and sign up for “Live Broadcast of Services”.

Bodhi Day Service

Sunday, December 5, 2021

This Sunday’s service will include the dedication of a new platform for our Bodhi Tree, built by the families of Cub Scout Pack 700 in memory of Scoutmaster Steve Kohara, who guides us from the Pure Land.  Rev. Henry will provide a Dharma School talk on the significance of the Bodhi Tree as refuge for all who seek the truth, followed by a Dharma Message for adults.

Schedule
8:30 a.m. Shōya Raisan Chanting
9:00 a.m. Taiso Morning Exercise with instructors Juliet & Grace Bost
9:30 a.m. Bodhi Day Service
10:30 a.m. Dharma Discussion

If you would like to attend the service in person, please email smbt@sanmateobuddhisttemple.org or call (650) 342-2541 to reserve a seat. Full Covid-19 vaccination is required. A maximum of 30 in-person attendees will be allowed, so please contact us at your earliest convenience if you wish to attend.

Please do not come to the temple without registering in advance.

You may also join us via Zoom for this Dharma Service. To receive the link, CLICK HERE and sign up for “Live Broadcast of Services”.