Jan 24, 2019

Posted by in BUDDHISM IN OTHER LANGUAGES | 15 Comments

Thanh Tri – the 2nd Mind Dharma: SAMYAGDRSTI – PRABHA SAMADHI – Part 3: RIGHT VIEW IN DIFFERENT ASPECTS” (Bài 3: Những góc tư duy về chánh kiến)



On Christmas Eve 2018, two monks from Bong Lai Pagoda in Long An Province led five novices to walk around, then they stopped in front of a rock cave which reproduces the place where a baby was born who then would be called Jesus. The monks taught these novices: “Let bow for three times”. This clip made me ashamed to be Buddhist – the “Prince of Universe” who should never bow to a kid, even then he would become God. I wonder if their master taught them about the noble status of a Buddhist or not? Under the precept, a Buddhist should not bow or worship deva/brahma, asura, demon and object. So why must those novices bow before the heavenly son for three times?

“Naga vase offering”

A Facebook page recently posted the image of some Tibetan lamas who guided followers from Quan Am Pagoda in Vung Tau City to prepare offerings in a ceramic pots, then dropped them into the river to perform “Naga vase offering”(!). It would be fine if they do “almsgiving” rather than “offering”, for the Buddhist shall never perform offering to the animal (Naga means dragon). Of 13 subjects deserved to receive offerings, 4 are the ones who have reached from Sotapattiphala to Arahattaphala, 4 are the ones who have reached from Sotapattimagga to Arahattamagga, 4 are the non-Buddhist ones who have attained from the first to the fourth jhana, and 1 is the one who is a virtuous Buddhist practitioner. From here, we are proud that a Buddhist practitioner who merely observes five (5) precepts can stand equally to the first three groups (i.e deserved to receive offerings) while the non-Buddhist practitioners must undergo great hardship to attain the jhanas.

Two monks from Bong Lai Pagoda may show their modest and harmonious attitude towards non-Buddhist sect but in fact, they did against the Buddha’s teachings. The other two Tibetan lamas may show their “broad cultivation and making abundant offerings” as the third virtuous vow of Samantabhadra Bodhisattva but in fact, they turn the noble status of the Buddhist into the ordinary or mundane one. The above two stories sound alarm over the lack of right view that can make one go astray which consequently lead to a disparagement of Buddhism because these clips spread fast in social network.

Four aspects of right view: Right view on worship, right view on respect, right view on viewpoint, and right view on liberation

Now we need understand aspects of right view specifically to avoid missing the orbit of Dharma. Right view is a general term of profound meaning but it includes four aspects as follows:

1/ Right view of worship: As said above, a Buddhist who took refuge in the Three Jewels should not worship Deva/Bharma, Asura, Demon and Object. This comes from a fact that many pagodas are worshipping Four Deva Kings, Chua Xu, Lieu Hanh, Chua Tien, god of wealth, god of earth, or Guan Yu. These places are going against the Buddha’ s teachings and refuge vow. They are definitely not the Buddhist pagoda. Many Buddhist canons say that after the Buddha expounded in each Dharma assembly, deva kings and lord of devas made vows to protect those who read and act in accordance with the canon or Buddha’s teachings. In the Ksitigharba Sutra (Sutra of the Past Vows of Earth Store Bodhisattva), a ghost king named Poinson-less made a vow to ask ghosts and spirits of the lands to protect those who follow the Buddha, read sutras, make offerings to the holy altars. From these points on, should Buddhist practitioners worship those who protect them?

2/ Right view of respect: It is ridiculous that many pagoda goers burn incenses for and bow before devas and asuras, just like a prince bowing before his mandarin. Hence we should know that a person with right view only worship those who worth worshipping like virtuous masters and Buddhist saints.

3/ Right view of viewpoint: This means all reasonings or arguments must be based on Buddha’s teachings such as “Four Foundations of Mindfulness” (the mindfulness of the body, mindfulness of feelings, mindfulness of mind and mindfulness of dharmas); “The Four Reliances” (Rely on the dharma, not the teacher/ Rely on the meaning, not the words/ Rely on wisdom, not on consciousness…). Do not present our viewpoint out of our subjective thinking but we should follow the teachings of Buddhist saints – one of five methods of reasoning in the study of causality or Buddhist logic (Hetuvidya) (including perception, example in logic, inference, magical power and Buddhist saints’ teachings). Without right view of viewpoint, none of commentators can stand firm in the debate.

Right view of liberation means a comprehensive knowledge of what is called suffering, the origination of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering and ways to end suffering (Four Noble Truths).

4/ Right view of liberation: means a comprehensive knowledge of what is called suffering, the origination of suffering, the truth of the end of suffering and ways to end suffering (Four Noble Truths). That’s why Buddhist practitioners’ ultimate and final goal is liberation, not the blessings in Brahma and human realms. A practitioner with right view has a wholehearted will and vow to set him free from samsara though still being bounded by ignorance – this is called the spirit of Mahayana. Only those who have full right view can possess this quality. In short, a person having much knowledge of and in-depth commentary about right view but does not follow or act against those four aspects is of no value. A Buddhist practitioner with a comprehensive right view will attain wisdom level by level. Meanwhile, those who are without or lack right view are like building their house on sand. This explains why they practice Dharma for years but do not understand about Dharma. For instance, they believe the Buddha is the fully enlightened being, still they ask for help from Demon, Asura, Fairy or Deva. They know about the value of “seven noble treasures” but still worship the god of wealth, citing that “a hungry belly has no ears”! This is called “to cultivate blessings and foolishness/misfortune at the same time” instead of “cultivate blessings and wisdom at the same time”.

“to cultivate blessings and foolishness/misfortune at the same time”

May the wisdom of Buddha shed light on every directions.

Om Mani Padme Hum!

A rainy afternoon on the peak of Phu Van Mountain, October 1, 2019

Thinley-Nguyen Thanh

Translated by Mat Hue Phap

Thanh Tri – the 2nd Mind Dharma: SAMYAGDRSTI – PRABHA SAMADHI



Part 3: RIGHT VIEW IN DIFFERENT ASPECTS” (Bài 3: Những góc tư duy về chánh kiến)

Part 4: GAIN FROM RIGHT VIEW, LOSE OF WRONG VIEW (Đệ nhị tâm pháp Thanh Trí: Chánh kiến quang minh tam muội – Bài 4: Ích lợi từ chánh kiến, tác hại từ tà kiến)

Part 5: How to be equipped with the full right view (Bài 5: Làm sao để được trang bị chánh kiến toàn diện?)


  1. Aman Prakash says:
    Dear guru

    Thank you for sharing this article. I bow on the lotus feet of guru. I have also seen budhist who worships to god,sprit. I think they haven’t taken proper budhist teachings.worshiping to god may also be reason of fear.i also used to worship God just because of fear thinking god will protect us from evil.The society also created such stupid evils (virtual).now I have quited to worship.you explained very well.

    Budha also said- the one who has no desire have no fear of anything.worship is not bad but as Budha said right view of worship. I have learned the ” four reliances “,The four noble truth . Overall the noble budhist have to concentrate on four foundations of mindfulness.

    The one who is connected with guru ,dhamma,and Sangha should not worship to god.worshiping doesn’t lead anyone to enlightenment,he must have to walk on his path to get true nature.

    I am new learner.Day by day I am practicing dhamma.

    May all sensient being attain true nature.

    Om Mani padme hum

    • Nguyên Thành says:

      Good. You should remember four aspects of right view: right view on worship,  right view on respect, right view on viewpoint and right view on liberation. 

      • Aman Prakash says:

        Dear guru

        I bow my head on your lotus feet. I understand what you want to say.

        Right view on worship- here one should not have to take refuge in god,asura,hungry ghost,Deva,etc but to Budha,dhamma and Sangha. As according to sutras one who take refuge in 3 jewels have not to go to worship God.

        Right view to respect – giving respect to whom who worship Budha,dhamma and sangha.

        Right view on viewpoint-all the argument and discussion have to be based on budha teachings.

        Right view on liberation-giving emphasis on cause and suffer and how to deal with that suffering.

        I am very fortunate as you noticed me.may you live long for the shake of all sensient being.

        May all sensient being attain true nature.

        Om Mani padme hum

  2. Vajrakitsune Foxxie Luna Inariusagi says:
    Guru Buddhas are indeed Supreme object of offering and refuge.. Om Mani Padme Hum
  3. Tantra Sagovana says:
    Dear Guru,

    Thank you for sharing this article which explains about four aspects of Right View.

    May all sentient beings be free from suffering and become enlightened.

    Om Mani Padme Hum.

    Tantra Sagovana (Ahmed Khan)

    • Nguyên Thành says:

      Good. Diligence in reading and comments is also a method to give you right view. 

      • Tantra Sagovana says:
        Thank you for replying Guru.

        I will have Right View and practice Dharma diligently.

        Om Mani Padme Hum

  4. tantra mahavita says:
    Dear Holy Guru … I bow my head to the feet of the Holy Guru. Fundamentally the correct vision is based on the Right Vision of Worship, Right Vision Respect, Right Vision on the point of view and correct vision on liberation … Refuge in the Buddha … Dharma and Sangha. That our Guru live happy a long life.Happy and Profound Gratitude to have found Holy Guru. May all beings find the Nature of Budhha.
  5. Totte Nordahl says:

    Good evening Guru

    Thank you so much for this article, right view is in deed the foundation.

    I am glad that this teachings is a life time of learning and I am enjoying it.

    The four aspects of right view is great. Thank you

    Om Mani Padme Hum


    • Nguyên Thành says:

      You comment alway than pass time. Good!

    • Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con xin phép được dịch comment của bạn đọc Totte Nordahl sang tiếng Việt như sau:

      Kính bạch Thầy!

      Con cảm tạ ơn Thầy đã cho con đọc bài viết này.

      Chánh kiến thực sự là nền tảng.

      Con hoan hỷ khi biết rằng những lời dạy của Thầy giúp con được học cả đời. Con hoan hỷ khi được học từ Thầy. Bốn khía cạnh của chánh kiến được Thầy luận giảng tuyệt vời.

      Con cảm tạ ơn Thầy.

      Om Mani Padme Hum.

  6. Lynwood Furthington says:
    Dear Holy Guru, Thank you for this article.
  7. Tantra Sagovana says:
    Dear Guru,

    My name is Tantra Sagovana.

    Thank you for sharing this article.

    Thank you for explaining the four aspects of Right View in detail.

    Right View is the first part of the Noble Eightfold Path and every Buddhist practitioner must obtain it in order to make progress in their Dharma practice.

    May all sentient beings be healthy and well and be free from suffering.

    May Guru be healthy and live long for the benefit of all beings.

    Om Mani Padme Hum.

    Tantra Sagovana (Ahmed Khan)

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