Teaching of the month - Apr 2020

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CULTIVATE! AND FEAR NOT SUFFERING, FEAR NOT DEATH

 KuanYin-q01

Accept life as it comes, to learn and to know of the truth of suffering between birth and death. Be ready to face difficulties and sufferings with boldness out of living correctly and righteously where generosity, morality, patience, effort, meditation and wisdom are applied.

OM MANI PADME HUM

That the world will be full of strife is for certain, that next year will be a very difficult year for countless people has been told to you many times before. But it is not just to know that difficulties are to be expected, must be expected. It does one no good just to know things. What is much more important is that due to such times disappointments along with sufferings should be accepted as part of being, part of one’s own karma, and part of the karma of the world.

Sages do not make predictions for the purpose of being recognised or extolled by their followers. If such are the cases, then their disciples and followers have misused the messages and the points. The specific details of world calamities are never revealed, should not be revealed, need not be revealed, for all who are true to cultivation should already know of the truth of suffering between birth and death. When they are told, it is a sign of undesirable pains that will follow, and those who are affected will be scarred for life, while those who escape any hurt are the very fortunate ones indeed. Those who are afraid to die had better prepared themselves well although they should not take prevention or make preparation because of impending dangers; rather they should know that life is always uncertain!

Those who are concerned for their future must always be ready to face it with boldness out of living correctly and righteously. They should also perform more good acts and show more kindness to the troubled world. They could spend more time for cultivation because the good conditions that they have now may not be available to them even tomorrow. Each day must therefore be spent well and in pursuit of the practice of the Dharma where generosity, morality, patience, effort, meditation and wisdom are applied. When this is done, the fear for death is reduced, the fear for a troubled and difficult future will be minimised, and the fear for death is no more an issue. Life must end in death. Fear and desire to live longer than necessary will only be foolish thoughts. It is better to dwell on how life within the realms of birth and death be ended, it is better to accept life as it comes and to learn to live the life as meaningfully as possible.

More time must be spent on prayers and deep contemplation. More energy must be exerted to make yourself capable of bringing help to others. When you are ready to help, when you are ready to live for the sake of helping, when you are truly on the Path that pleases the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas, you will not fear bad and evil times, you will not be afraid to see the suffering world, you will be ready to step into the midst of suffering and silently extend your help to reach those who try to reach you. You will be caught with the sight of so much grief that you will wish that you had a thousand hands in order to render your help more efficiently, you will wish that you have a thousand eyes to seek out those who need the help, you will wish for wisdom that you will be able to bring peace and comfort to them. It is this great desire to relieve sentient beings from their states of sorrow that the depiction of the greatly compassionate form of Niang with a thousand hands and eyes emerged.

Even with all the hands and eyes that you can wish for, it will not be of great help to the countless miserable ones who are ever on the path of ignorance. You will need spiritual powers and strength, you will need the Bodhisattva’s spirit, endurance, power, and wisdom to do just a little bit, to be of some help, to the world. Because the task is so immense, because it will be endless, because it is so formidable, it will require too long a time to help the beings who are waiting in the wings to take rebirth and to swim in the sea of suffering in ignorance, that countless Bodhisattvas are needed to stay on to play their parts! Such is the nature of the world and yet all are striving to hang on to meaningless lives. Generate this thought within the mind and think deeply on it. It will help you to become more resolute in your practice and determination, it will cause the great enlightenment mind to be brought forth, it will put you onto the path of compassion which, though extremely difficult to walk, yet the wish to help beings who have been relatives to you in your past, will drive you on.

Do not look back, do not despair easily. That you already have a much better life that most is already a great blessing which should be shared with others. When others are weak, they will need to hold on to the strong one. Be such a leader and play your part well. Give help, give comfort, and whenever possible, teach them to pray!

Monday, 5th November 1986
10th Moon, 13th Day

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