I was reading the Dalai Lama's Cat, about a Himalayan cat that is adopted by His Holiness. It had some very good explanations of Buddhism and Buddhist thought. Here are my notes.
The law of cause and effect says that step by step we can create the causes to experience reality in a way that results in greater contentment and abundance, and we can avoid the causes of unhappiness and lack of resources.
The thought manifests as the word
The word manifests as the deed
The deed develops into habit
Habit hardens into character
So watch the thought and what it says with care
And let it spring from love born out of concern for all beings
As the shadow follows the body,
As we think,
So we become.
When our understanding of something deepens to the point that it changes our behavior, in the Dharma we call this a realization.
Before we eat any meal, we should always remember the beings that have died so that we can eat. Their lives were just as important as ours. Think of them with gratitude and pray that their sacrifice will be a cause for them to be reborn into a higher realm, and so that you can quickly reach full enlightenment in order to lead them to that same state.
Choose to overcome.
If you keep giving in to a weak mind you feed weakness. The result is a weaker mind in the future. Instead, cultivate confidence. A lack of self confidence is a form of laziness, a weak mind to be overcome.
Take personal responsibility for inner development
Other beings cannot make us more mindful
We must experience the rich tapestry of each day to the fullest mindfully
Other beings cannot force us to be more patient or kind
Improve our contentment practice
Improve concentration while meditating
The way things exist
How things exist
Depends on our own minds
This depends on our feelings toward others and things, not that others and things exist
The wish to attain enlightenment in order to lead all living beings to that same state. The mind of enlightenment is based on pure, great compassion
Which is founded on pure, great love
Pure means impartial, without conditions. Great means benefiting all living beings, not just the small group of those we know and like.
The only way to enjoy a state of permanent happiness and avoid all suffering is to achieve enlightenment.
Bodhichitta is the most altruistic of motivations- we wish to achieve enlightenment not only for ourselves but to help every other living being reach the same state.
To develop confidence in our abilities we learn to become more other focused and less self focused.
Our awareness of a truth deepens to a point where it changes our behavior- that is a realization.
Love and compassion means that we have a sincere wish to give happiness to others and help free them from all forms of dissatisfaction
Only by being fully awake to the present are we able to put our realizations into action
Being a Buddhist is about expressing the teachings in your every word, thought, and deed.
Leading an authentic life calls for big eyes and a strong voice- there is no room for laziness.
May all beings have happiness
And the true cause of happiness
May all beings be free from suffering
And the true causes of suffering
May all beings never be parted from the happiness that is without suffering
The great joy of Nirvana, liberation
May all beings abide in peace and equanimity, their minds free from attachment
And free from indifference
May all beings be happy and free