Picture of Bodhidharma

Age: 1545

Citizenship: India


Bodhidharma (Bodhidharma), or Damo in Chinese and Japanese Daruma, who was born about 470 years and was the third son in a family of Indian Brahmin. His monastic name - Bodhidharma - he was later, when converted to Buddhism, and in 1527 he arrived in China (China), received patra and robe from the 27th Buddhist patriarch Prajnatara (Praj & # 241; & # 257; t & # 257 ; ra).

However, as is often the case with legendary personalities of antiquity, and especially related to the religion, the facts are often impossible to separate from fiction. Thus, the date of Bodhidharma`s life is very uncertain, but some scholars and historians, and all doubts that Bodhidharma ever existed.

Whatever it was, in China, Bodhidharma left the ship, and after several years of sailing reached the coast of China.

The country at that time was clearly divided into two dynasties - the Northern Wei (Northern W & # 232; i Dynasty) and Liu Sung (Li & # 250; S & # 242; ng Dynasty), and it was during this period of separation and internecine wars Indian Buddhism transformed Buddhism in China, which in the north focused on magic and meditation, while in the south were philosophical discussions and reach an understanding of the essence and fundamentals.

It is known that Bodhidharma was awarded a conversation with the Emperor Wu (Emperor Wu) of the Liang Dynasty (Liang Dynasty), during which the emperor did not was ready to talk with an enlightened monk and failed to understand ego.ak, Bodhidharma crossed across the Yangtze River (Yangtze River ) and settled in the North. By the way, according to legend, he crossed the river on the straw. However, he is credited with a lot of impossible from the standpoint of materialism skills.

Bodhidharma settled in the monastery of Shaolin (Shaolin Monastery). It is said that he spent nearly ten years, contemplating a stone wall. Incidentally, it was there, in a monastery, Bodhidharma created a special system of training trance, who taught the monks to achieve trance psychophysiological state called satori. This method consists in the fact that the monk had three times a day to be on his knees in front of the wall, his spine must be straight. Choosing a wall in front of the eyes of some point, we should focus on it all my attention, while remaining in a strictly fixed position, and then disperse it, as if seeing the entire wall as a whole. After that, the mind and the senses are gradually turned off, the thought go, but before the inner eye of the monk appear different vision, and thus it deeper and deeper into a state of trance.

In addition to training, a special half-starved diet was developed by Bodhidharma in the monastery, as well as in the Shaolin Temple was a whole system of physical training, which the monks were doing well in the state of a trance. In contrast to the spiritual trance, trance physical allow almost completely disperse consciousness, and, therefore, the monks began to feel, see and hear the whole external world every cell of your body.

In general, the teaching of Zen, or rather its direction of Chinese Chan preached by Bodhidharma, he carried the monks, on the basis of two approaches - the understanding and practice.

The debate about whether it is Bodhidharma of the person who gave the main impetus to the spread of Zen Buddhism in China, do not cease to this day. Some scientists believe that Bodhidharma came up with the Chinese themselves, in order to associate Zen with India, the birthplace of Buddhism.

However, any evidence that Zen existed in China before the arrival of Bodhidharma, no.

So, Bodhidharma is considered the first patriarch of Zen Buddhism in China, and his portraits and statues of worship and worship in the Zen Buddhist monasteries.

It is known that during the life of Bodhidharma was not particularly well-known, knew about it only a few of his students, but over time he became the patriarch of millions of Zen Buddhists and students of kung fu. In addition to well-known of his merits attributed to him and a few very difficult verifiable facts. Thus, it is believed that in addition to the teachings of Zen and the art of kung fu, Bodhidharma brought to China and tea. According to legend, in order not to fall asleep during long meditation, he cut off his eyelids, and where they fell, rose tea bushes, the leaves of which gave people courage and nebyvaluyurabotosposobnost. Tea has since moved far beyond the walls of the monastery and became monks not only to drink, but all the people in the East. By the way, this is why artists always depict Bodhidharma with bulging lidless eyes.

Despite the increasing popularity of Buddhism in China, students Bodhidharma was quite small - only a few people, among which the most known Huike today (Huike). He became Patriarch after Bodhidharma himself.

On the death of Bodhidharma is also no consensus - one source, he died in the year 528, in the fifth day of the tenth month, poisoned by a jealous monk. Another source indicates that he died on the banks of the river Luo (Luo River), but does not mention the dates, nor the cause of his death.

It was said that three years after the death of one official met Bodhidharma walking in the mountains of Central Asia. He carried on his shoulder a staff on which hung a single sandal. He told the officer that he was returning to India.

His grave was opened, and it really was only one sandal. By the way, this is why many pictures Bodhidharma carries a staff with a missing shoe.

Despite the fact that the identity of Bodhidharma, as well as the importance of his contribution to the development of Chinese Zen, had still not defined clearly, it is still considered a legendary Indian monk, the 28th Patriarch of Buddhism, the founder of the teachings of Zen Buddhism in China.