Useful and useless rituals
by Kantipalad, Thailand, The Buddhist Channel, May 12, 2006
I agree with my Buddhist friend who wrote about the practice of mind-less rituals by certain circles. When the Buddha listed down factors contributing to the strength of society, "rituals" was one of the factors which was encouraged as it fostered a sence of belonging. So a "middle way" is in need of discovery between what is deemed as useless rituals, and persons who have none at all.
In a talk given by Thanissaro Bhikkhu of Metta forest monastery, www.mettaforest.org, he states that there are two questions to Buddhist practice. The question of "how" and the question of "why" He continues in his talk by saying the question of "how" naturally follows the answering of "why".
He says, "I believe that as we as a human race enter a new "globalization" era of our development, we should like wise undertake a new look together at "why" we practice."
Thinking of this is like having a cluttered desk with papers and items scattered every where. Having a bare desk with nothing on it; and then put back only those rituals and traditions that are absolutly neccessary to developing the "why".
Now that Buddhism have spread to many parts of the world, I am confident that the innovative and creative juice of human beings can create many ways to respect the Triple Gem, so that many more will benefit from the Dharma.