New Publications: Dispelling the Darkness of the Ten Directions

84000 is pleased to announce its newest publication:

Toh 269

Dispelling the Darkness of the Ten Directions

As the Buddha approaches Kapilavastu, he is met by the Śākya youth Shining Countenance setting out from the city in his chariot. Shining Countenance requests the Buddha to teach him a rite of protection from harm, and the Buddha describes ten buddhas, each dwelling in a distant world system in one of the ten directions. When departing from the city in one of the directions, he explains, keeping the respective buddha in mind will ensure freedom from fear and harm while traveling and success in the journey’s purpose. After receiving this teaching, Shining Countenance and the others in the assembly are able to see those ten buddhas and their realms directly before them, and the Buddha prophesies their eventual awakening. The Buddha further explains that to read, teach, write down, and keep this sūtra will bring protection to all; it is consequently often chanted at the beginning of undertakings, especially travel, to overcome obstacles and bring success.

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Dispelling the Darkness of the Ten Directions

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The cultivation of generosity, or dāna—giving voluntarily with a view that something wholesome will come of it—is considered to be a fundamental Buddhist practice by all schools. The nature and quantity of the gift itself is often considered less important.