Reflection On The Autumn Festival At The New York Buddhist Church

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On October 24th I attended the Autumn Festival at The New York Buddhist Church with my fellow classmate, Bianca Rodriguez, located at 331-332 Riverside Drive, New York, New York. The New York Buddhist Church practices the Pure Land and Zen perspective of Buddhism. This church is also supported by specifically the Japanese culture, opposed to the many other Asian cultures who share this perspective. We were at the festival from beginning to end, 12pm-4pm. The outside of the church was very simple. There were only neutral colors, such as greys and whites. There was however, a statue of Shinran Shonin who was the founder of the Jodo Shinshu School of Buddhism (The New York Buddhist Church). According to The New York Buddish Church’s website, this …show more content…
The main message I received from the readings and from the information that was shared with me from the Buddhists there was to follow Buddha Dharma. In other cultures, this law may be called Logos, the Torah or Tao (23, The Law of Survival and the Law of Compassion). Buddha Dharma represents the Buddhists teachings that maintain cosmic and universal order within our world and beyond. This Dharma expressed in The New York Church of Buddhism was based off of expressing compassion to others and finding inner peace through Zen, or meditation and discipline. Pure Land and Zen Buddhism meet a middle ground where there is an essential faith in Buddha, which we find in the Pure Land perspective and a commitment to meditation and self-realization, which we find in Zen Buddhism. The actions of the people exemplified compassion through being open and welcoming to those outside of this church and belief system. The actions of the people exemplified meditation through the quietness prevalent during this event. The event itself was very quiet and calm so as to encourage reflection of the events and beliefs of these perspectives and of one’s self. This event reflected the doctrine of respect, reflection and compassion. Everyone in this church unite through a psychological state which is found through silence, meditation and truth. As far as …show more content…
This is the first religious service I have attended in years. I have had best friends from many different cultures so I have been able to be a part of experiencing Passover, Eid, and other religious holidays. In comparison to other religious centers I have visited, The New York Buddhist Church was very modest and simple in terms of “worship” and the appearance of their sacred space. There weren’t elaborate costumes, stained glass or murals of religious figures. The only thing I guess you would be able to consider elaborate during this event were the incense that are burned during meditation and the robes monks wore. It was very down-to-earth. The order of worship was calm and smooth, structured with a feeling of freedom and acceptance. This church also felt significantly less judgmental than other religious settings I have entered. Everyone I encountered was very respectful and open to speaking with me and sharing their views on life through the mind of a Buddhist. I arrived there with the assumption that it would be colorful and elaborate but it wasn’t, and that came to me as actually a pleasant surprise. The second you walked through the door you felt welcomed and calm, something I have personally never felt entering a Christian Church or synagogue. I am much more interested in this religion than I was initially because of

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