Telephone TiSarana Buddhist Confirmation
Our original rationale was to offer a Ti Sarana Confirmation Ceremony only to persons particularly interested in our Bright Dawn Institute's Way of Oneness approach to Buddhism. This would involve persons whom we came to know and whom we felt understood our vision and direction.
This perspective was broadened to provide the Ti Sarana Ceremony as a general gate to the Buddhist path. The purpose of the ceremony is to function as a personal expression of an individual's wish to confirm and deepen his or her commitment to the Buddhist path. Our confirmation ceremony does not necessarily imply that one becomes a follower of a particular approach or tradition. Although it is still felt that in-person participation should be encouraged, such participation can be difficult for persons who do not have easy access to a local organization. Due to the interest for an "at-home" confirmation ceremony, we have begun offering a ceremony via telephone for out-of-state persons who wish to have the ceremony in their own homes.
We were initially concerned that doing a confirmation ceremony over the telephone would significantly reduce the impact for participants. Yet, our experience has been that providing such a service meets a need for sincere persons who wish to have a confirmation ceremony. We were also concerned that providing a telephone confirmation ceremony would "cheapen" and lower the standards for such a ceremony. We would open ourselves to criticism from other Buddhist organizations. However, Rev. Koyo Kubose said, "That's the problem of other organizations; people's needs come first." Our confirmation is less an institutional standard and more a tool for individual spirituality.
We conceive of our telephone confirmation ceremony as a broad gate for anyone who wishes to confirm his or her religious identity. It should be mentioned that a confirmation ceremony is not necessary for a person to be considered a Buddhist. Institutional validation is not mandatory. Being confirmed is not required in order to receive Buddhist services such as weddings or funerals. People who are Buddhist because they were born into a Buddhist family rarely feel a need for a ceremony to confirm their identity as Buddhists. Perhaps because of the concept of baptism, persons coming to Buddhism from other traditions often feel the need for a confirmation ceremony. A confirmation ceremony is to be encouraged for all Buddhists, regardless of their backgrounds. Such a ceremony is an invaluable way to deepen one's individual spirituality.
To help personalize the ceremony, prospective participants might view a few videotapes (see our Video Loan Program) of Rev Koyo Kubose giving Dharma talks so that he doesn't seem like a complete stranger when he officiates one's TiSarana Ceremony. Another option is to call Dial-the-Dharma (559-642-4290) and listen to some short taped talks. Rev. Koyo's talks alternate daily with those by his father.
Instructions for a Telephone Confirmation Ceremony
1. Tell us your spiritual journey "story;" i.e. religious background, what brought you to Buddhism, and what books and people have influenced you. This information will help Rev. Koyo Kubose in providing your personal Dharma Name. Your "story" can be communicated in written form or over the telephone. Please contact: Rev. Koyo Kubose, 28372 Margaret Road, Coarsegold, CA 93614; firstname.lastname@example.org; (559) 642-4285.
2. Set a date and time for the ceremony. Some suggested times convenient for us are: M, Tu, Wed, Th evenings, starting time between 7:00 and 9:00 P.M. (Central Time); or Sunday mornings, starting time between 10:00 A.M. and 1:00 P.M. (Central Time). If necessary, other mutually convenient times can be arranged.
3. After your ceremony date is set, please cut several strands of your hair and send to: Bright Dawn Institute, 28372 Margaret Road, Coarsegold, CA 93614. During the ceremony these strands will be attached with a gold notarial seal to your Ti Sarana Certificate. This certificate will also include the Dharma Name chosen for you by Rev. Kubose. If you have a small photo of yourself, please include it when you send your hair strands to us. We will keep this photo in front of us during the ceremony, as a small way of personalizing the proceedings.
4. Suggested options
5. At the mutually decided upon date and time for your confirmation ceremony,
you should call us at (559) 642-4285. We will be waiting for your call.
6. Please have handy the Order of Ceremony that follows, which you will need to recite from during the ceremony.
7. Any appreciation donation may be made to: Bright Dawn Institute, 28372 Margaret Road, Coarsegold, CA 93614.
Order of Ti Sarana (Three Treasures) Ceremony
With deepest reverence and compassion, we are here together in the spirit of Gautama, the Buddha, the Enlightened One. Life is One. We are One with the Buddha. We are One with the Teaching. We are One in the spirit of Universal Brotherhood. We resolve to be earnest followers of the Buddha and to dedicate our lives to the Way he has pointed out. Then, may we like him attain the noblest and most peaceful state of Nirvana.
Three Treasurers Reading
Leader: "I go to the Dharma for guidance."
Leader: "I go to the Sangha for guidance."
Incense Offering/Three Treasures Breathing
Ti Sarana Ceremony
Dharma Talk and Giving of the Dharma Name*
Leader: "We surround all people and all forms of life with love
All: "May the Infinite Light of Wisdom and Compassion so shine
within us that the
Leader: "To all Enlightened Ones..."
All:"...who are present in their teachings, we pledge our loyalty
and devotion. We