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Buddhism Essay, Research Paper

What do Buddhism and Sioux tradition tell us about meditation and having a vision? First of all, we meditate in Buddhism because it gives us “the nourishment for your spirit and nourishment for your body,” (Hanh, p. 42). We also meditate to heal other or ourselves. In the Sioux traditions having a vision is like healing a person. Only the holy man can have the vision. The method of meditation and having a vision is like a method of relaxing and healing the state of conscious.

Sometimes having a vision is like having a daydream. In Black Elk Speaks, he sometimes has a yonder vision that pops up like a dream.

Then suddenly, as I sat there looking at the cloud, I saw my vision yonder once again-the tepee built of cloud and sewed with lightning, the flaming rainbow door and, underneath, the Six Grandfathers sitting, and all the horses thronging in their quarters; and also there was I myself upon my bay before the tepee. I looked about me and could see that what we then were doing was like a shadow cast upon the earth from yonder vision in the heavens, so bright it was and clear. I knew the real was yonder and the darkened dream of it was here. (p. 169)

This passage interests me because I didn’t know it is possible to have a vision just like a dream. It is very interesting. I think only the holy, sacred men would have a vision that gives him the power to be strong in the Sioux traditions. Having a vision can also heal a person when they are ill or in pain. Having a vision and meditation can be similar to each other.

According to Black Elk, he had his vision at the age of nine. Ever since he had his vision, he is able to cured ill people.

Now I walked to the quarter of the west, where I lit the pipe, offered it to the powers, and, after I had taken a whiff of smoke, I passed it around. When I looked at the sick little boy again, he smiled at me, and I could feel that the power was getting stronger. I next took the cup of water, drank a little of it, and went around to where the sick little boy was. Standing before him, I stamped the earth four times. Then, putting my mouth to the pit of his stomach, I drew through him the cleansing wind of the north. I next chewed some of the herb and put it in the water, afterward blowing some of it on the boy and to the four quarters. The cup with the rest of the water I gave to the virgin, who gave it to the sick little boy to drink. Then I told the virgin to help the boy stand up and to walk around the circle with him, beginning at the south, the source of life. He was very poor and weak, but with the virgin’s help he did this. Then I went away. Next day Cuts-to Pieces came and told me that his little boy feeling better and was sitting up and could eat something again. In four days he could walk around. He got well and lived to be thirty years old. (Pg. 202-203)

This passage interest me because of the way this passage can cure the sickness in the little boy and how this method of healing people was important to the Sioux tradition. This is one of the ways that they can save many people from passing away, especially many people are hungry because there isn’t enough food and clothing during the wintertime. And in the wintertime, there was a war going on, they needed many people to fights against the whites.

Years ago, I was extremely ill. After several years of taking medicine and undergoing medical treatment, my condition was unimproved. So I turned to the method of breathing and, thanks to that, was able to heal myself. Breathing is a tool. Breath itself is mindfulness. The use of breath as a tool may help one obtain immense benefits, but these cannot be considered as ends in themselves. These benefits are only the by-products of the realization of mindfulness. (Hanh, Pg. 23)

The method of breathing is the way of curing the illness in Buddhism tradition. We should know how to breathe in order to maintain mindfulness. A person that knows how to breathe is the person who is always conscious of everything. In order to be conscious and breathing needs to practice mindfulness through meditation.

Every day and every hour, one should practice mindfulness. That’s easy to say, but to carry it out in practice is not. That’s why I suggest to those who come to the meditation sessions that each person should try hard to reserve one day out of the week to devote entirely to their practice of mindfulness. In principal, of course every day should be your day, and every hour your hour. But the fact is that very few of us have reached such a point. We have the impression that our family, place of work, and society rob us of all our time. So I urge that everyone set aside one day each week. (Pg. 27)

This passage interests me because it is trying to tell everyone that it is a good idea to meditate at least an hour during your favor time. It can be the time when you are jogging in the morning, relaxing, lying on the bed, etc. If you learn to meditate, you are able to relax your mind and concentrate on one thing at a time. The mind is more conscious than before anything that surrounds you.

The passages from Sioux and Buddhism traditions are similar because they are both trying to teach us the method of healing without medications but through a vision and breathing by meditation. The Sioux tradition is different because they use a sacred way of healing through visions, which passed down from generation to generation. And Buddhism tradition use a scientific way of healing through breathing, meditation, and mindfulness, which can not be able to pass to generations but just able to learn.

The thing that I learn from Sioux traditions and the Buddhism tradition is that they are totally different. They both have different rules, custom, and traditions. But they both have a similar method of healing and relaxing. The Sioux tradition uses the method of vision and the Buddhism tradition uses the method of breathing through meditation of mindfulness in the state of consciousness.


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