Since the affinity of Jews for Eastern paths is a push-pull dynamic of attraction to the East accompanied by aversion towards many aspects of what they consider to be Judaism, David sought answers for the issues that turned him off about Judaism.With disarming honesty, he labeled his 15 questions, "A Jewish Buddhist's complaints about Judaism and comparisons of Judaism with Zen." "They are complaints or objections," he wrote to Rabbi Tatz, "due partly to my experience and partly to my ignorance." All true learning starts with an implicit admission of ignorance.All three remain the bedrock of folk Buddhism in modern Japan -- Amida for the coming life in paradise, Kannon for salvation in earthly life, and Jizo for salvation from hell. The three, along with Fudo Myo-o, are perhaps the most widely venerated Buddhist deities in Japan, and statues of all four, in stone or wood or plastic or ceramic, are found throughout the Japanese islands.My friend Henya, after years in the Jewish renewal movement, decided that it was not feeding her spiritually. There, in the foothills of the Himalayas, she found a guru."I am a Zen Jew struggling to resolve these two identities," he writes.Since more than one-fifth of all American Buddhists are Jewish, this issue of dual identity may be widespread.' It's not a question, for me, of deciding to complicate myself with Judaism.
Hozo fulfilled the vows and thereafter became Amida Buddha.
Amida, which means Infinite Light or Infinite Life, is one of the loftiest savior figures in Japanese Buddhism, and Amida faith is concerned primarily with the life to come.
Amida is also one of the Five Buddha of Wisdom (see Learn More section).
Feeling spiritually failed by my Conservative Jewish upbringing, I had sought and found a satisfying path in Hindu meditation and spiritual practices.
Yet, I sometimes felt like a wife who divorces her first husband because he never brought home a paycheck and marries a second husband who supports her in grand style only to feel, whenever she encounters her first husband, that, unaccountably, she still loves him.
Soon after starting to meditate at the Zen Center, David brought Galit to see the center and to meet his teacher, a female Zen priest. "Well," my meditation teacher says, "the statues of the Buddha are there as reminders of the essence of what we call 'Buddha Nature.' They represent a certain kind of centered, aware, solid presence that we each have and can cultivate within ourselves." "In my religion," my wife says acidly, "we call that idol worship.