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Why do Buddhists pray to Buddhas in temples? I heard that Sakyamuni didn't approve of that and even criticized Bodhisattva for telling other people that he can help them with things that only God can help with. Sakyamuni considered himself and Bodhisattva as ordinary human beings without any divine abilities. Is that true? Is there any reference or source which confirms this?

  • I think you should read my post carefully before asking such a question. I'm the one asking for references or sources to confirm what I heard is true or not. – laser2302 May 18 '17 at 5:46
  • Lasers, question and the detail of it cover 5 or more questions, so it's to assume that most would answer just the main question. What can a god help with? How could my person help you? Maybe in telling: Don't be to greedy, and ask one by one step by step and think twice and phrase you question to the point, best so that it can be categorigal answered or with a further explaining, since "answers that requires further conter-questions in advanced" are not so welcome here. – Samana Johann May 19 '17 at 0:06
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Buddhists don't praying Buddha. Not reciting chants as devotee does for other gods. We just ignite candle which is symbol of enlightenment and we just pay homage to Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha those are Three Jewels.
Faith in Buddhism centres on belief in the Three Jewels.

Buddhaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi.
Dhammaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi.
Saṅghaṃ saraṇaṃ gacchāmi.

I take refuge in the Buddha.
I take refuge in the Dharma.
I take refuge in the Sangha.

Buddhist don't believe in god and Buddha never said anything about god. So he criticized because of distracting people which Buddha never mentioned this in his techniques or what people supposed him as (that god is exist and can help someone with something) so he wasn't god just ordinary human being like us. But he enlightened one and became Buddha.

There's Buddha delivered discourse Jewels in Ratana Sutta

Ratana Sutta

*RATANA SUTTA
The Buddha’s Discourse on
The Three Superb Jewels
And Their Intrinsic Power

With an Introduction, Translation, and
Explanations Based on Pali Sources by
Bhikkhu Nanadassana

1.Yànãdha bhåtàni samàgatàni,
Bhummàni và yàni va antalikkhe,
Sabbe'va bhåtà sumanà bhavantu,
Atho' pi sakkacca suõantu bhàsitaŋ.

1.Whatever beings are here assembled,
Whether terrestrial or celestial, May all beings be glad.
Moreover,may they attentively
Listen to what is said:

2.Tasmà hi bhåtà nisàmetha sabbe,
Metta ŋkarotha mànusiyà pajàya,
Divà ca ratto ca haranti ye baliŋ,
Tasmà hi ne rakkhatha appamattà.

2.Therefore, pay heed all you beings,
Show your friendliness to humankind,
Who day and night bring you offerings.
Hence, protect them diligently.

3.Yaŋ ki¤ci vittaŋ idha và huraŋ và
Saggesu và yaŋ ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ
Na no samaŋ atthi Tathàgatena.
Idam'pi Buddhe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

Suvatthi(su-"good, well"+atthi"to be, being") = well-being :good health or fortune.
Or as the Commentary ex-plains: arogatā (healthiness), nirupaddavatā (no danger, safety).

3.Whatever treasure there is here or beyond,
Or whatever superb jewel is in the heavens,
None is equal to the Tathàgata (the Buddha).
Verily, in the Buddha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

4.Khayaŋ viràgaŋ amataŋ paõãtaŋ
Yadajjhagà Sakyamunã samàhito
Na tena Dhammena samatthi ki¤ci.
Idam'pi Dhamme ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

4.There is nothing equal to that Dhamma
Of the superb Extinction (of defilements),
Dispassion, and Deathlessness (Nibbàna),
Which the concentrated Sakyan Sage (the Buddha) has realized.
Verily, in the Dhamma is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

5.Yaŋ Buddhaseññho parivaõõayã suciŋ
Samàdhim'ànantarika¤'¤am'àhu.
Samàdhinà tena samo na vijjati.
Idam'pi Dhamme ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

5.That Purity which the Supreme Buddha extolled
Is called "concentration with immediate effect".
Nothing equal to that concentration is found.
Verily, in the Dhamma is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

6.Ye puggalà aññha sataŋ pasatthà
Cattàri etàni yugàni honti.
Te dakkhiõeyyà Sugatassa sàvakà,
Etesu dinnàni mahapphalàni
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

6.Those eight individuals
That are praised by the Virtuous Ones Constitute the four pairs (of persons).
They, the worthy of offerings, Are the disciples of the Well-farer (the Buddha),
And gifts given to them yield abundant fruit.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

7.Ye suppayuttà manasà daëhena,
Nikkàmino Gotamasàsanamhi,
Te pattipattà amataŋ vigayha,
Laddhà mudhà nibbutiŋ bhu¤jamànà.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

7.Those who with a steadfast mind,
Apply themselves well
In the Buddha Gotama's Teaching,
Being desireless, attain the highest gain.
They plunge into the Deathlessness (Nibbàna)
And enjoy the peace of emancipation,
Obtained for free.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

8.Yathindakhãlo pañhaviŋ sito siyà
Catubbhi vàtehi asampakampiyo,
Tathåpamaŋ sappurisaŋ vadàmi,
Yo ariyasaccàni avecca passati.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

8.Just as a city-post fixed firmly in the ground
Is unshake able by the four winds,
So too, I declare, is the virtuous person
Who sees the Noble Truths unwaveringly.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

9.Ye Ariyasaccàni vibhàvayanti,
Gambhãrapa¤¤ena sudesitàni,
Ki¤càpi te honti bhusappamattà
Na te bhavaŋ aññhamaŋ àdiyanti.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.

9.Those who clearly comprehend the Noble
Truths, Well taught by him of profound wisdom
Even if they are very negligent,
They do not take up an eighth rebirth.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

10.Sahàvassa dassanasampadàya
Tayassu dhammà jahità bhavanti:
Sakkàyadiññhi, vicikicchita¤ca
Sãlabbataŋ và'pi yadatthi ki¤ci.
Catåhapàyehi ca vippamutto,
Cha càbhiñhànàni abhabbo kàtuŋ.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

10.Just with his gaining of insight
He abandons three states of mind:
Self-identity view, sceptical doubt,
And whatsoever [grasping to]
Mere rules and observances.
He is also fully freed from (rebirth in)
The four woeful worlds (apàyas),
And is incapable of committing
The six major misdeeds.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

11.Ki¤càpi so kammaŋ karoti pàpakaŋ
Kàyena vàcà uda cetasà và,
Abhabbo so tassa pañicchàdàya,
Abhabbatà diññhapadassa vuttà.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

11.Any evil action he may still commit
By body, speech, or mind,
He is incapable of concealing it;
For it is said that such incapability
Is of one who has seen the Path (of Nibbàna).
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

12.Vanappagumbe yathà phussitagge
Gimhànamàse pañhamasmiŋ gimhe,
Tathåpamaŋ Dhammavaraŋ ade sayã,
Nibbànagàmiŋ paramaŋ hitàya.
Idam'pi Buddhe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

12.As a woodland grove is crowned With blossoming flowers
During the heat of the first month of the summer,
Even so (crowned) is the sublime Dhamma
Leading to Nibbàna which
He (the Buddha)
Expounded for the highest good.
Verily, in the Buddha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

13.Varo, vara¤¤å, varado, varàha ro,
Anuttaro Dhammavaraŋ adesayã.
Idam'pi Buddhe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

13.He, the Sublime one (the Buddha),
The Knower of the Sublime (Nibbàna),
The Giver of the Sublime (Dhamma),
The Bringer of the Sublime (Noble Path),
The Peerless one (the Buddha)
Taught the Sublime Dhamma.
Verily, in the Buddha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

14.Khãõaŋ puràõaŋ, navaŋ natthi sambhavaŋ
Virattacittà àyatike bhavasmiŋ,
Te khãõabãjà aviråëhicchandà, Nibbanti dhãrà yathàyaŋ padãpo.
Idam'pi Saïghe ratanaŋ paõãtaŋ.
Etena saccena suvatthi hotu!

14.Their old (kamma) is destroyed,
No new (kamma) is produced,
And their mind is unattached to future rebirth.
Those wise ones,with the seed (of rebirth-consciousness) destroyed,
And with no more desire for further growth,
Go out as the flame of a lamp.
Verily, in the Saïgha is this superb jewel.
By virtue of this truth may there be well-being!

(Spoken by Sakka, Lord of the gods)

15.Yànãdha bhåtàni samàgatàni,
Bhummàni và yàni và antalikkhe,
Tathàgataŋ devamanussapåjitaŋ,
Buddhaŋ namassàma.
Suvatthi hotu!

15.Whatever beings are here assembled,
Whether terrestrial or celestial,
Let us revere the perfect Buddha
Honoured by gods and men.
May there be well-being!

16.Yànãdha bhåtàni samàgatàni,
Bhummàni và yàni và antalikkhe,
Tathàgataŋ devamanussapåjitaŋ,
Dhammaŋ namassàma.
Suvatthi hotu!

16.Whatever beings are here assembled,
Whether terrestrial or celestial,
Let us revere the perfect Dhamma
Honoured by gods and men.
May there be well-being!

17.Yànãdha bhåtàni samàgatàni,
Bhummàni và yàni và antalikkhe,
Tathàgataŋ devamanussapåjitaŋ,
Saïghaŋ namassàma. Suvatthi hotu!

17.Whatever beings are here assembled,
Whether terrestrial or celestial,
Let us revere the perfect Saïgha
Honoured by gods and men.
May there be well-being!

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. – Lanka May 19 '17 at 9:07
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If you're saying that Buddha said that you should pray to God instead of to Buddha - then you're mistaken. Ultimately, in Buddhism, good things can only happen because of our own good karma.

My Tibetan Buddhist teacher has explained it roughly as follows:

A traditional Buddhist (f any type) would only pray to a Buddha after offering to that Buddha. It is hoped that the good karma of the offering may help the outcome of the personal request in that prayer come true.

By modern protestant Buddhist standards this is highly controversial. Even my Tibetan teacher would add that - however common this practice is - the motivation of the offering is suspect if you give it in hopes of getting help for something practical and this-wordly.

However, praying for support staying on course in your dharma studies and practice is highly appropriate.

As usual in Buddhism: motive is everything.

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Define pray: to speak to God especially in order to give thanks or to ask for something

But bhikkhu just recite to meditate.

The example:

  1. Some bhikkhu want to leave the Buddhist monkhood, but when he recite about buddha's goodness. He will cancel to leave.
  2. Reciting, about buddha's goodness, will let bhikkhu like to meditate their own goodness, too.
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Something had to have created all?

What created all?

God?

God is all?

Who created God?

God can't be created?

If so, nothing had to create all...

...and therefore God doesn't have to exist , right?

Just sayin friend, really I have know idea what I'm talking about...

...but I say these things not as an answer but as words to be pondered.

At least that was my aim.

Buddhist praying?:

Buddhists will kinda pray but it is more like a wish that beings have wellbeing and aren't suffering. It's not at all praying to the Buddha(or it's not supposed to be).

It's paying homage to the Buddha, the Dhamma, and the Sangha or homage is payed to the Buddha by himself with a Buddharupa or Buddha Image.

One should be mindful that the statue is not the Buddha and is merely an aid to recollection.

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The powers of those who think themselves as “God Almighty” pales in comparison to the Powers of Supreme Buddha. BAKA was one such Brahma in the Maha Brahma realm, He thought that he was the “GOD” having power over a vast area of the Universe. Any living being (including each of us) has been in all realms in this beginningless sansara. We have been at the highest (except the five pure abodes in rupa loka which can be accessed only by Anagamis or Non-Returners). One time the Buddha pointed to a bunch of ants on the ground and told bhikkhus that each of those ants had lived in a brahma loka. The sansara is that long; there is no discernible beginning. These 31 Planes of Existence is described in the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta. It lays out the “blueprint” of Buddha Dhamma.

In the realm of Great Brahmas (Maha brahma) Buddha mentions about this Great Brahma, a deity whose delusion leads him to regard himself as the all-powerful, all-seeing creator of the universe. It is in Kevatta (Kevaddha) Sutta: To Kevatta (DN 11). Kevaddha Sutta informs one of what even a “God” does not know. Maha Brahmas, like Baka, think they’ve gone beyond anything the Buddha knows, so the Buddha has to go up to their Brahma heavens and subdue their pride, to show them that they still have more to let go of, that there is something the Buddha himself has gone beyond but they haven’t.

Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta lays out the “blueprint” of Buddha Dhamma, and in one part of it names the 6 deva realms and 15 out of 16 rupi Brahma realms. The sutta is meant to convey the way to “see” the true nature of existence with wisdom, not with the physical eye. Only a Buddha can discover the true nature, but a human can comprehend it, once explained.

In the brahma realms, all brahmas are born fully formed without the help of a mother’s womb. Theirs is an “opapatika” birth. For example when a human dies, his body becomes inert like a log, and at the very instant a fully-formed brahma is formed in the appropriate brahma world. This brahma will have sense faculties appropriate for a brahma: only eyes, ears, and a mind. These are the indriya for the new existence. These indriya can become ayatana (a factory that produces sankharas of another birth) at times depending on the activities of that brahma.

Male/female distinction is there only in the kama loka. In the brahma realms (higher 20 realms), there is no such distinction. Brahmas do not have dense physical bodies or sexual organs. One is born in either the 16 rupa loka realms or the 4 arupa loka realms (brahma realms) because one has given up all desires for bodily pleasures, including sex, because one has seen the value of niramisa sukha (and jhanic pleasures) that can be achieved by giving up bodily pleasures.

All brahma realms are “unisex“. Brahmas do not have dense bodies to experience touch, taste of foods, or smells. They have very fine bodies. A brahma “body” has only the most minute of matter that is much much smaller than an atom in modern science. This is why it is thought (erroneously) that there is no matter in arupa lokas. There is matter, but it is insignificantly small. The Buddha said that vinnana cannot exist without a pancakkhandha, and the pancakkhandha in the arupa loka has a rupa component, even though negligibly small.

Brahmas in rupa loka are removed from “coarse sense pleasures”; they do not have a desire for tastes, smells, or body touches. Seeing and hearing is enough for them. Brahmas in arupa loka do not even have a desire for sights and sounds. Mind pleasures are enough for them, and the presence of matter is minimal in the arupa loka. So, sense pleasures are absent in brahma loka.

Brahmas and devas can “see” humans engaging in activities (if they want to), but they do not have any liking (upadana) for such “coarse pleasures”. Their mental state is much higher, just like a human who has developed abhinna powers. They could actually be repulsed by human bodies. Just like we do not “miss out” on the activities of worms, they are not interested in human activities. It all depends on the mindset associated with the particular bhava.

The brahmas (and also devas) can “see” without the aid of light and “hear” without the having air to transmit sound waves; their “physical bodies” do not have “eyes” and “ears” like ours. Thus they can “see” and “hear” over great distances. And they can be anywhere they wish within a short time. The closest analogy of how their “vision” works is how we “see” dreams; we don’t need eyes to see dreams. Likewise the brahmas just perceive.

  • Sadhu! Althought some extentions might be far from the questions purpose. MN 49, invitation of Baka. Just searching the sutta where the Buddha rebuked those who said in a way "it's because of an external power that people become murder, thieves...". Just forgot the rebuke of those secterians who believe in "non-action", lets see. – Samana Johann May 18 '17 at 23:58
  • Secterians... found it AN3.61. "Having approached the brahmans & contemplatives who hold that... 'Whatever a person experiences... is all caused by a supreme being's act of creation,' I said to them:... – Samana Johann May 19 '17 at 0:02

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