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How Best To Express Filial Piety?

Nov. 10 | Question: In Buddhism, what are the best ways to express filial piety to our parents? Answer: Beyond the usual ways of taking physical care of them, in terms of offering enough clothing, food, shelter and such, which are worldly in nature and thus still...

Is It Possible To Fire With Compassion?

Oct. 31 | Question: As I hired an incompetent domestic helper via an incompetent agent, I technically fired the helper. But the agent asked for some holding on to the helper in name first, to facilitate her transfer without incurring more cost for both the agent...

Why Merits Can Only Be Partially Dedicated?

Oct. 18 | Question: Why is it that when there is chanting or doing good in the name of another, that the person can only receive one-seventh of the merits, while six-sevenths are received by the chanters or practitioners? Answer: This is a natural law, as realised...

Is A Meat-Buyer Also A ‘Meat-Eater’?

Oct. 11 | Question: When I dine with my family in the same restaurant, I will be having vegan food while they have meat dishes. As I pay for all, am I considered to have ‘eaten’ meat?  Answer: This is not considered (killing or) eating meat, but it...

Should Buddhists Play Matchmakers?

Sep. 13 | Question: Is it alright to matchmake good friends who are good in character? Answer: It does not accord with a Bodhisattva Precept in the Brahma Net Sutra to do matchmaking – as it facilitates the perpetuation of Samsara by encouraging attachment....

Should I Help Pay For Non-Vegan Food?

Sep. 6 | Question: I am a vegetarian and an aspiring vegan. As my workplace offers discount in an attached restaurant, friends like to visit to have meals with me, to also benefit from the staff discount I can get. However, they usually order meat dishes. I try...

How Did Dharma Ceremonies Originate?

Aug. 30 | Question: Were there Dharma ceremonies (法会) in the Buddha’s time? If not, how did they arise? Answer: The original meaning of Dharma ceremonies is more accurately ‘Dharma assemblies’ – where people assemble to learn the Dharma....

How To See Emptiness Of Forms?

Aug. 18 | Question: How do I practise to see emptiness, to depart from forms? I have tried asking myself where is the self-nature of phenomena (which does not exist), so as to not take them too seriously, and reminding myself that my self-nature (Buddha-nature)...

Can Precepts Really Be Broken Virtually?

Aug. 9 | Question: Does killing someone and stealing something in a computer game create any negative karma? Answer: The answer is not so straightforward. Despite the virtual nature of these deeds, it is to the extent that there is intention to actually kill,...

Should One’s Past Form Be Seen As Empty?

Aug. 2 | Question: It is said that we should not be attached to emptiness… Answer: … and not be attached to form too, while it is practically safer to be skilfully ‘attached’ to pure forms (such as that of Pure Land) as the best stepping...

How Do I Make Spiritual Vows?

Jul. 24 | Question: How do I make my own personal spiritual vows? Answer: You can announce your vows before a Buddha image in a proper Buddhist temple while kneeling, prostrating once upon saying each vow. If you wish to further express the sincerity and seriousness...

Should Buddhists Fear God?

Jul. 13 | Question: Someone suggested that even Buddhists should fear God. Is this sensible? Answer: How about asking which of the millions of gods worshipped throughout history should be the one feared? And how is one more threatening than the others? It...

Where Are ‘Religious’ Killers Reborn?

Jul. 5 | Question: When terrorists claim to kill in the name of a deity believed in, will they go to hell?  Answer: Yes, unfortunately, if there is no sincere repentance in time. This is so as such killing is always with greed (to win favour), hatred (for non-believers)...

How To Be Positive During Downturn?

Jun. 28 | Question: How do I stay positive during an economic downturn? As there is mid-life crisis with loss of direction and confidence, it is difficult to remain positive. Answer: There is no need to deliberately stay positive in an economic downturn as there...

Can Females Reordain As Buddhist Nuns?

Jun. 9 | Question: Can females ordain twice as Buddhist nuns? Answer: No, according to the record of this event and rule by the Buddha in the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya’s Section On Miscellaneous Matters’ 30th Scroll《根本说一切有部毘奈耶。杂事》卷三十,...