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Parables from the White Lotus Sutra - The Burning House

Parables from the White Lotus Sutra - The Burning House

Wednesday 20 March 2024 7pm – 9:15pm

Part of the Parables of the White Lotus Sutra series

The White Lotus Sutra is a popular and ancient text originating over 1000 years ago. It uses the entire cosmos for its stage, employs a multitude of mythological beings as actors and "speaks almost exclusively in the language of images as it explores Buddhist faith and practice. It has a cast of thousands and doesn't always make rational sense, rather like some modern sci-fi dramas. In this series we will be looking at a number of very evocative parables which are contained within the text.

In this first week Joan will be exploring the parable of ‘The Burning House’ and the questions and teachings which this parable has contained within it.

It tells the story of an old man who has a house full of his young children. He knows that it is about to burn down, and though the flames and smoke are spreading, and although he shouts at them to get out, the children are so caught up with their toys and their games that they ignore him. So what is he to do? In the end he finds a surprising way to get their attention.

The burning house is a metaphor for the world and our tendency to ignore reality in favour of pursuing pleasure and distraction. The old man is the Buddha and he has to come up with some particularly attractive offerings to gain our attention and to help us to escape the things that threaten us.

The parable of the burning house is even more relevant to our lives today and contains some important teachings about our present situation in the world.

 All over 18 are welcome. Newcomers are very welcome.

No need to book, just turn up.

The evening is freely given but we would very much appreciate a donation of £8-£12, or whatever you can give, to help cover our costs. York Buddhist Centre depends for its existence almost entirely on donations from those who use it. No one is paid at YBC. Please support us if you can.