August 20, 2007
You Need to Know These 5 Fields of Learning
People often ask why they should study things other than just meditation, if that’s why they’ve come to MeditationExpert.com.
The answer is simple.
To become a Bodhisattva, or enlightened adept who can help others, according to Buddhism there are 5 areas of learning you need to master (Confucianism has a different list of three areas of study for becoming a "gentleman"):
1. meditation – spiritual cultivation
3. medicine and healing
4. arts and literature
5. technology and science
In other words, you have to become well rounded in your learning — more of a Renaissance man. When you read the teachings of all sorts of sages, you quickly learn they could talk about all sorts of topics because they had multiple skills and knowledge sets other than just meditation. They always studied to increase their wisdom.
In fact, the great Zen masters of China, such as Yun-men and Lin-chi, Huang-po and Ma-tsu, were even so skilled they could just as easily have been kings as meditation masters.
These are your role models if you really want to succeed in meditation. Knowledge and learning from other fields can actually help you understand many things in the field of cultivation.
However, don’t get lost in external learning, even just studying meditation techniques. Practice, practice, practice is the key to progress and success.