Devotion means to give oneself completely, and one way to practice devotion is to make offerings to buddha. In sanskrit, this is called puja; in Japanese, kuyo. When we make offerings to a buddha image, we offer them to the three bodies of buddha. Because the boundless, knowing, compassionate awareness that all beings share- the three bodies of buddha- makes liberation from suffering possible for ourselves and everyone, nothing could be more worthy of our devoted offerings. Buddha can take any form in order to help people, and if a carved wooden image can help people open up, even a little, to wisdom and compassion, then buddha can manifest in this way. How these things happen is mysterious.
Then I am no longer in control of what I see. Buddha gets to decide. In a way, it’s like giving our personal power over to buddha. So, we can walk down the street and see beautiful trees and flowers, and we can offer those beautiful trees and flowers as outer offerings, and also the eyes that are enjoying the trees. We can give it all to buddha.
simple ways are calling- in the leaf, the bud, the stem- color, light, scent.
I don’t know Who—or what—put the question. I don’t know when it was put. I don’t even remember answering. But at some moment I did answer Yes to Someone—or Something—and from that hour I was certain that existence is meaningful and that, therefore, my life, in self-surrender, had a goal.