Tiger Woods Apology

I owe it to my family to become a better person. I owe it to those closest to me to become a better man. I have a lot of work to do, and I intend to dedicate myself to doing it. Part of following this path for me is Buddhism, which my mother taught me at a young age. People probably don't realize it, but I was raised a Buddhist, and I actively practiced my faith from childhood until I drifted away from it in recent years. Buddhism teaches that a creation of things outside ourselves causes an unhappy and pointless search for security. It teaches me to stop following every impulse and to learn restraint. Obviously, I lost track of what I was taught.

And with that announcement, Tiger Woods sent searches for the word "buddhist" into the top 10 on Google Trends. Here's a sample of some of the articles written following the announcement:

Buddhist scholars say that forgiveness and redemption are core components of the faith. "You're always beginning again in the Buddhist tradition," said John Kornfield, a prominent Buddhist teacher based in California. "You see that you're causing harm, you repent and ask forgiveness in some formal or informal way, and you start again."

Thankfully for Tiger, Theravada Buddhism does have a tradition of atonement. There’s no specific ritual, but in Thailand, for instance, Buddhists will go to a local temple to light incense and offer alms to the monks to repent for their sins. However, Tiger should keep in mind the effectiveness of this process is contingent on following the principle of “right effort,” says Donald Williams (a professor of philosophy at Purdue University). For Woods, that means he will have to identify those behavioural patterns that led him to stray from the precepts and cut them out entirely.

Chicago Sun-Times
Buddhism does allow for forgiveness and redemption, but not in the same way as Christianity. Patti Nakai, an Associate Minister, Buddhist Temple of Chicago, was addressing controversial comments made by Fox News' Brit Hume made earlier this year urging Woods to turn to Christianity because Hume didn't think Buddhism offered the forgiveness and redemption offered by Christianity. Buddhism focuses on the need for followers "to get to that place where you can totally accept who you are and all the circumstances that brought about that,"

Newsweek-Washington Post
People recover from addiction even when they find themselves unable to believe in any form of Higher Power apart from the men and women they attend meetings with, and with whom they struggle to recover a meaningful and valuable life. That notion of Higher Power is remarkably similar to what Buddhists find in Sangha, the community of fellow practitioners who are doing their best to live compassionately and to live well.

We leave the last word to Jodo Shinshu scholar, Taietsu Unno from his book, "Shin Buddhism: Bits of Rubble Turn into Gold":
"Foolish beings, however, are the primary concern of Amida, and it is upon them that the flooding light of boundless compassion shines, eventually bringing about a radical transformation in life–hopeless to hopeful, darkness to light, ignorance to enlightenment, bits of rubble to gold."

The Gold Medal of Life

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Tiger Wood's Secret

He's having an incredible year so far and the Masters is just around the corner. Tiger Woods is on par to win his fifth green jacket in Augusta, Georgia.

So what's his secret?

Meditation. This is an excerpt from an article from the UK Times web site:

Woods does not talk much about the fact that he meditates, something he learnt from Kultida, his mother, who is a Buddhist. “In the Buddhist religion you have to work for it yourself, internally, in order to achieve anything in life and set up the next life,” he said. “It is all about what you do, and you get out of life what you put into it. So you are going to have to work your butt off in every aspect of your life. That is one of the things that people see in what I do on the course.”