Toby Gillies Buddhist Meditation

A Buddhist meditation on Christmas

A Buddhist meditation on Christmas for all

A Buddhist meditation on Christmas examines the significance of this special time of year. A Buddhist monk reflects on the meaning Christmas.

Christmas is a wonderful time of year for Buddhists. We love to celebrate the birth and life of Jesus Christ. The message of his true being, as the son of God, as God incarnate, and thus as love incarnate, is an inspiration. As inspiring to all Buddhists as it is to Christians.

As Buddhists we marvel at the enormous beneficial influence of Christianity through history and throughout the world. Much of the good in Western civilisation has its foundation in the teachings of Christ.

These teachings are more important now than ever before for modern Western countries. The insidious influence of those opposed to the Deity, with their political and social engineering, need a counterbalance. There can be no ethics without a source of ethics. That source is the greater nature and capability of humankind when connected with the divine.

For it is essential that humanity understand its grounding in the divine. We must come back to a greater mode of being, a transcendent divine dwelling which goes beyond the boundaries of any ego-based view of our individual importance.

The presence of the Divine

Not that individuals are not important, but to be a true individual, to be your best self, is to understand one’s divine essence.  The connection of the soul with the Trinity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit is very much mirrored in the Buddhist teachings on Buddha nature. Turning away from the Divine, or the Buddha nature, is the Buddhist definition of ignorance.

This ignorance binds us to the suffering of samsara as we discussed earlier.

So thinking of Christmas is to think of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit as revealed in the birth of Christ. This speaks to us of our creation in love, our connection in compassion and our capability in wisdom. In this we are all grounded in the Divine and freed of ignorance.

Thus, Christmas connects our minds with the greater good, with boundless love and with the great beauty of the divine.  We feel the Deity is present in and around us at all times and revealed in the course of our life. It is a precious time of year.

For this we give thanks to the source, Jesus the Christ, whose birth we honour, and to all the good Christians who have sustained and spread the Gospel through history and reached out to benefit all who would hear.

With this in mind, blessings for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Why ‘A Buddhist meditation on Christmas?’

‘A Buddhist meditation on Christmas’ was something that occurred in meditation one day. It stems mostly from the great appreciation I developed over many years of interfaith dialogue with my good friends of Christian persuasion. 

My primary connection has been with Father Michael Mifsud and Father John Dupuche. Through Father Michael I was introduced to Father Ken Peterson and Sister Kathleen Murphy of Sancta Sophia, Warburton. All enriched me greatly with their understanding and their embrace of the wisdom contained in Tibetan Buddhism.

I have always loved the way these friends can remain firmly grounded in the wonder of their own faith and yet share such interest in mine.

We talked together, prayed together and meditated together many many times over many days. I feel particularly blessed by their wonderful humanity, understanding, their love and wisdom.