A Convergence of Science and Spirituality

The monotone chanting of the Prajna Paramita creates a momentum that overloads the left-brain neurons, making them flow over to the right brain. As the development of the whole brain becomes activated, a quantum leap into a higher state of awareness becomes more feasible. A trans-focalization from phenomenal consciousness to the noumenal is heightened by the paramitic or spiritual quality of our everyday thoughts, feelings, and actions.
Statements that negate the senses in relation to a deeper reality are naturally beyond the comprehension of an ordinary conventional mentality. In fact, the paradigm shifts of science, especially in the field of quantum physics, are now forced to run to energy fields of "emptiness" to break the impasse between the indeterminate behavior of subatomic particles and waves in relation to the space-time continuum, thus confirming the Lord Buddha's supreme insight into emptiness or selflessness, the reality ground beneath the multidimensional, concatenated conditionality o consciousness observing the phenomenal world of objects under investigation.
The heartfelt intuitive understanding of Prajna Paramita enables us to come to our own unconditioned experience of reality.
Significant Metaphors of Buddhist Liturgy
The elevated altar represents our own higher levels of spiritual consciousness. The icon of the Buddha symbolizes the attainment of an enlightened awareness of reality amidst the delusions of worldly phenomena.
The burning candles and incense sticks are a token of our flowing aspiration for spiritual growth and development. The rising smoke represents our elevated expectations and realizations on the path.
The bell sounds represent an alert eagerness for truth. Their vibrational tone indicates spiritual activity dedicated to the service of humanity. The bell striker is the power of our spiritual will to initiate action guided by the spirit of universal oneness.
The beauty of colors also shed their own meanings. White is for purity or the unconditioned state of consciousness. Yellow is for wisdom. Red is for spiritual activity or service. Blue is for persevering aspiration toward enlightenment.
As we bow, we are connecting our head center with our heart center. Thus, mind and heart, ideas and ideals shall find unity in their expressions. From a physiological viewpoint, a deep bow allows our circulatory system to bring more blood into the brain, as blood is the vehicle of consciousness in the physical body. Moreover, the pineal and pituitary glands become stimulated, producing a biochemistry that prepares the brain as an instrument of higher consciousness even while we live in the world of materiality.
The Five Precepts
1. Aware of the suffering caused by the destruction of life, I am committed to cultivating compassion and learning ways to protect the lives of people, animals, plants, and minerals. I am determined not to kill, not to let others kill, and not to condone any act of killing in the world, in my thinking, and in my way of life.
2. Aware of the suffering caused by exploitation, social injustice, stealing, and oppression, I am committed to cultivating loving kindness and learning ways to work for the well-being of people, animals, plants, and minerals. I will practice generosity by sharing my time, energy, and material resources with those who are in real need. I am determined not to steal and not to possess anything that should belong to others. I will respect the property of others, but I will prevent others from profiting from human suffering or the suffering of other species on Earth.
3. Aware of the suffering caused by sexual misconduct, I am committed to cultivating responsibility and learning ways to protect the safety and integrity of individuals, couples, families, and society. I am determined not to engage in sexual relations without love and a long-term commitment. To preserve the happiness of myself and others, I am determined to respect my commitments and the commitments of others. I will do everything in my power to protect children from sexual abuse and to prevent couples and families from being broken by sexual misconduct.
4. Aware of the suffering caused by unmindful speech and the inability to listen to others, I am committed to cultivating loving speech and deep listening in order to bring joy and happiness to others and relieve others of their suffering. Knowing that words can create happiness or suffering, I am determined to speak truthfully, with words that inspire self-confidence, joy, and hope. I will not spread news that I do not know to be certain and will not criticize or condemn things of which I am not sure. I will refrain from uttering words that can cause division or discord, or that can cause the family or the community to break. I am determined to make all efforts to reconcile and resolve all conflicts, however small.
5. Aware of the suffering caused by unmindful consumption, I am committed to cultivating good health, both physical and mental, for myself, my family, and my society by practicing mindful eating, drinking, and consuming. I will ingest only items that preserve peace, well-being, and joy in my body, in my consciousness, and in the collective body and consciousness of my family and society. I am determined not to use alcohol or any other intoxicant or to ingest foods or other items that contain toxins, such as certain TV programs, magazines, books, films, and conversations. I am aware that to damage my body or my consciousness with these poisons is to betray my ancestors, my parents, my society, and future generations. I will work to transform violence, fear, anger, and confusion in myself and in society by practicing a diet for myself and for society. I understand that a proper diet is crucial for self-transformation and for the transformation of society.