I feel that Buddhist philosophy could also be called the study of humanity, because Shakyamuni Buddha researched humankind. He investigated the seven emotions and six sensory pleasures; birth, aging, illness, and death; as well as a concrete method for freeing oneself from all these vexations and sufferings. Buddhist philosophy does not attach importance to ghosts and deities, nor does it believe in their efficacy.
It’s autumn in the southern hemisphere. The sky is clear and the air comfortably cool as leaves in the mountains are slowly turning colors. Many practitioners favor the fall and its seasonal landscape because this is the best season for spiritual practice. The frequent changes of the autumn scene make it easier to perceive impermanence.
At Auckland University in New Zealand I discussed the relationship between the Avataṃsaka Sūtra (or the Flower Garland Sutra) and the theory of relativity. The theory of relativity as presented in the Avataṃsaka Sūtra completely overturns mankind’s common-sense understanding of time and space.
While you care for those who are most beloved to you, you must also learn to love still more people, and in fact all living beings. Love is capable of creating infinite beauty. Because we have love, we have bodhisattvas and buddhas, heaven, and the pure land of supreme bliss. I wish everyone a happy Valentine’s Day!