Yesterday marked a major milestone for the Garden of 1000 Buddhas as concrete for the first of the eight throne walls was poured. The throne walls are arrayed as spokes of the Garden’s ‘dharma wheel’ configuration, each representing one aspect of the Noble Eightfold Path to enlightenment as taught by Shakyamuni Buddha. They will be the supports for the 1000 Buddha statues, themselves aligned back-to-back along each wall’s 140’ length.
This first wall symbolizes Right View, and was sponsored with devotion by Tulku Sang-ngag Rinpoche’s students and broader community, who are now going beyond this one wall to sponsor Right Intention.
One of the Buddha’s foremost disciples, Shariputra, summed up Right View in this way:
“And what, friends, is right view? Knowledge of suffering, knowledge of the origin of suffering, knowledge of the cessation of suffering, and knowledge of the way leading to the cessation of suffering—this is called right view.”
Vietnamese Zen teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, in The Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching, describes Right View in somewhat more modern terms:
“Our happiness and the happiness of those around us depend on our degree of Right View. Touching reality deeply—knowing what is going on inside and outside of ourselves—is the way to liberate ourselves from the suffering that is caused by wrong perceptions. Right View is not an ideology, a system, or even a path. It is the insight we have into the reality of life, a living insight that fills us with understanding, peace, and love.”
The elements of the Garden will be marked with explanatory signs to help visitors connect with the deeper qualities of the symbols which resonate with their own basic, authentic goodness.
If you feel inspired to contribute to the Garden’s Eightfold Path throne walls, please click here!