Step by Step

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K. Ken Fujimoto

At a given point in time, something may seem very important.  At a later point, that same thing may not seem nearly as important, even trivial.  Later still, one comes to see that it was important in context.

We have all had such experiences.  Some of what seemed so important at the time may even have become totally forgotten.

One such example can be seen in how we react to starting school.  A young child going to ...

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President’s Message June

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Thank You and Congratulations!

The Sangha Crafters were upstairs one day when I happened to drop by the office, so I went to see what they were working on.  I hope I am not spoiling a surprise…they made the most adorable quilt with an Obon dance scene with little children in yukatas!  Each of the volunteers was responsible for one of the children.  It made me happy admiring it. The Sangha Crafters create things that bring joy to people’s lives, whether ...

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Avoid all evil

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G Sakamoto

The Dhammapada is a collection of verses that most likely originated with the Buddha. The collection is made up of 423 verses in 26 books. There are several of these verses in our Dharma School service book. There are many translations of the Dhammapada both in print and online. In the Fourteenth Book, the fifth verse reads: “To avoid all evil, to cultivate good,
and to cleanse one’s mind —
this is the teaching of the Buddhas.” When Bai Juyi (772 ...

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To Learn and Share

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G Sakamoto

Everyone of us has something to share. Something weÕve learned and spent some time thinking about and working with. Something we hold important and of value. Sometimes we donÕt recognize what we might have to share but others may see it. Sometimes we think its something and it turns out to be something unexpected. Often the unexpected reveals something of ourselves that we may have overlooked and not appreciated. In the past few months there have been two projects ...

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President’s Message May

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Happy Earth Day!

By the time this article appears, I know that we will be celebrating Earth Day here at the Betsuin.

Many of us had grandparents and parents who frequently uttered the phrase “mottainai!”  whenever we did something unthinking and wasteful.  After I had my own children I uttered those same words and felt the same frustration with unthinking and wasteful behavior.  I guess age makes us more mindful of the effects we have on everything around us.  We are much ...

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Obon-Request for Volunteers

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The San Jose Obon Festival is an opportunity to participate in one of the largest cultural events in the Bay Area.  You will meet members of the San Jose Betsuin, people involved in the Asian American community, and perhaps renew old friendships. There are many tasks requiring volunteers prior to the festival as well as during the festival weekend. Click here for a list.  If you would like to volunteer, please email sjobonfestival@hotmail.com. Your help is greatly appreciated!

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April 2013 Board Bullets

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Betsuin Board Bullets

April 04, 2013 Betsuin Board of Directors Meeting

by Joyce Iwasaki

The intent of the Betsuin Board Bullets is to highlight Board actions, decisions, special events and projects.  Please contact the Betsuin board officers, directors, or the ministers for more details on any item.

Prior to the April Board Meeting, Aloha Buddha, a DVD, was shown for the benefit of the Board members. This historical documentary, winner of  “Best Documentary” at the Hawaii International Film Festival in 2011, ...

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Gratitude to Termites?

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Gratitude to Termites?
K. Ken Fujimoto

The other day at our Spring Ohigan service, Rev. Shibata referred to the Four Gratitudes, gratitude to parents, gratitude to the ruler of the nation, gratitude to sentient beings and gratitude to the Three Treasures, Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. The one that caught my attention the most was the gratitude we should feel towards sentient beings.

Buddhism often refers to all life and not just humans by talking about sentient beings. Most people will understand this ...

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No Make Hard

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No make hard
G Sakamoto

I have thought of the Three Poisons of hatred, greed and ignorance as drivers that push us along through the six realms of existence, through samsara, through the rounds of birth-and-death. The samsara mandala depicts this as a wheel with six spokes. The spokes separate the realms of hells, hungry ghosts, fighting spirits, heavenly beings, humans and animals. On the outer rim of the mandala is the twelve chain of causation. At the hub, around which ...

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