The path to happiness at Famen Temple

From:CGTN     Author:Han Bin     Time:2017-11-22 10:55:28
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There's a consensus that Buddhism is a philosophy where practicing mental discipline can lead to a higher consciousness. A CGTN reporter recently talked to the monks and nuns at the Famen Temple in China's Shaanxi Province, about their quest for happiness.
There's a consensus that Buddhism is a philosophy where practicing mental discipline can lead to a higher consciousness. A CGTN reporter recently talked to the monks and nuns at the Famen Temple in China's Shaanxi Province, about their quest for happiness.  Buddhism is grounded in the belief that the path to happiness starts from understanding the root cause of suffering. The solution is not to eliminate all desires, but to understand the desires for what they actually are. Many joined the temple to find that understanding.  "I used to have all sorts of troubles. I wanted to find a long-term solution to avoid misery over time," said Master Ru Guang, from the Institute of Buddhism, Famen Temple. 43-year-old Master Ru Guang used to work in the entertainment sector. He had a wife and child. But happiness eluded him, and the marriage ended painfully. He says when he was at home, all of his thoughts were on money, relationships and emotions. But now he has found a different place in his heart. Life is simple, but he can free his mind from all distractions. Some devote themselves to the Buddha because they want a higher understanding of enlightenment. Sheng Miao came to the temple after graduating from university, because she had a lot of confusion in life, and couldn't find the answers in any of society's ways. Sheng believes that happiness gained in ordinary life is short, and temporary. Although an individual might feel happy for the moment, it will soon be broken. Though people often yearn to return to the original state of happiness, it's impossible. Buddhism teaches lasting happiness without repeating suffering. The monks and nuns at the Famen Temple live very simple lifestyles and their aim is simple: they're seeking spiritual happiness far beyond material satisfaction. Precepts and disciplines are to cultivate a mental state of happiness. Meditation is used to confront desires head-on. The daily practice and teachings are to help them be in the world but not of the world. Many say precepts are not to control our minds, but to help us detach from anxieties. "Buddhism believes the fewer desires you have, the higher level of happiness you can achieve. The better the material conditions, the less pleasure," says Master Xian Kong. He says precepts are not the ultimate goal – it's only by understanding the wisdom of the Buddha, can one pursue the greatest happiness. He also says once people care about the well-being of others, and bear in mind the bigger picture, they can achieve long-term happiness, too.
Editor:liutong
Tags:path happiness famen temple
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