Pervasive Triumph -- Missing Mother in the Moonlight
作者:krmzz    发布时间:2011/6/28      点击率:12218

  Filial piety is the core of the traditional virtues in Chinese culture which has been transmitted for more than five thousand years. In Tibet, filial piety was listed as a primary doctrine in the “Sixteen Household Ethics” promulgated by the King Songtsen Gampo in the seventh century. It is not only the basis for conducting oneself in the society, but also an essential part of a consummate personality of a Buddhist. It is impossible that someone not filial or dutiful to his or her parents could grasp the ultimate Buddha dharma.

  The worldly people normally mistake someone’s choice to become a Buddhist monk or nun for impiety. That comes from their ignorance of Buddhism. Buddhists are not only very filial to their parents, but also able to expand it in depth and scope with the wisdom gained from Buddhist teachings. For a Buddhist, filial piety does not only mean being obedient, dutiful or supportive to his parents, but also helping them liberate from the sufferings of living and dying and obtain the permanent happiness. This is the depth of a Buddhist’s filial piety. A Buddhist does not only perform filial piety to his parents in the present life, but also commit to benefiting all sentient being that have ever been his parents since the beginning. This is the broad scope of a Buddhist’s filial piety. Therefore becoming a Buddhist monk or nun is not impiety but rather the ultimate filial piety.

  When Phurba Tashi Rinpoche just arrived at Yarchen, he was short of money. But he was not bored as he could learn the sublime teachings from Lama Rinpoche. One day, while practicing meditation in his hut, he saw a very familiar figure like his mother in his visualisation. He ran out to observe. It was indeed his mother. She had walked there from their hometown. Her face was even tanned by the plateau sunshine and covered by travel fatigue. She brought a whole bag of baked barley flour, a lump of yak butter, some caked tea, and most importantly, a mother’s love and care. She asked Rinpoche about his life in the monastery and then started on the housekeeping like cleaning the hut and boiling some tea for her son.

  Happy time always passed quickly. Mother was leaving for home after a couple of days. Rinpoche accompanied her down the hill and sent her for a quite long distance. On mother’s command he reluctantly returned to the monastery. But he did not go back into his hut. Instead, he ran up to the highest hilltop behind the Grand Hall to look into the direction of his mother’s leaving. Tears scrolled down his face.

  Before long night had fallen to the plateau and stars started twinkling in the blue sky. The moon light seemed especially bright that night. It was cold. But Rinpoche was still standing there, overlooking to the direction of his hometown. He could not help concerning about his mother: “When am I going to see her again? Can she sustain in the cold for the whole week on her way back home? It is freezing at night in the highland. Would she catch cold? Would she be attacked by wild animals?” Rinpoche was so concerned that he did not notice that his tears were already frozen in his face.

  Rinpoche stayed on the hilltop whole night. The next morning, almost frozen, he stagnated down to his meditation hut. The food brought by his mother was still in the corner. Mum’s care and love could still be touched in that cosy space. He could not hold his tears for missing his mother.

  Time flies. Shortly Rinpoche was selected to take retreat in the retreat centre. One night in his dream, he saw his mother gaze in his eyes and talk to him “My loved son, I will leave (this world) soon. Since you have not come back to see me, I am here to see you. I am leaving you (forever) now. But do not be sad, my sweetheart. Your father will look after you.” And she said a lot to condole Rinpoche. Rinpoche then threw himself into his mother’s arms and burst into crying. After a while, he woke up with tear stains in his face. The pillow was already wet too.

  Several days later, message was received that his mother had passed away on the night of that dream. His family did not let him know immediately in case his retreat was interrupted. Bearing huge sorrow, Rinpoche prayed His Holiness Lama Rinpoche to help release his mother’s soul from the after-death stage. Rinpoche devoted himself in more strict practices in retreat to compensate for not being able to take care of his mother in her last days. Rinpoche dedicated all the merits of his practice to all mother-like sentient beings as he had transformed the love towards his mother into the great compassion towards all sentient beings in his mind.

  It has been more than ten years since then. But time does not fade out Rinpoche’s remembrance of his mother. When stricken by memories, or watching a TV program with mother and children scenario, Rinpoche cannot help sobbing and dipping into reminisce. But in fact, at every moment, our guru has never neglected or forgotten cultivating the great compassion to all the mothers (sentient beings) within the Three Realms since the original beginning.

[Post Script]

  The traditional virtue of the Chinese culture has centred on the ethic of filial piety in the five thousand years of China’s history. It is a famous saying in China that “Among all virtues filial piety is the top one. So be nice to your parents whenever you can.” Most emperors in the ancient time also claimed that “My forefathers ruled with the virtue of filial piety.” as a confirmation of the importance of this virtue in their empire.

  Parents are the closest to us. They have been favouring us with meticulous nurturance. In the worldly point of view, if someone does not even treat his parents well, how can we expect him to treat other people well and commit to his duties to his work, family, the society and the country? On the other hand, in the Buddhist point of view, the one that is not filial to his parents cannot comprehend the Buddha dharma which demands a consummate moral quality of the practitioner because all the merits of Buddha dharma can only be attained from benefiting all sentient beings with selflessness and altruism. So filial piety is not only the corner stone of a harmonious worldly life, but also the starting point of the path in pursuit of the ultimate awareness. The genuine vast motivation of all bodhisattvas stems from expanding the filial piety to all sentient beings. This is also called bodhicitta, which is the only seed of attaining the Buddhahood. Treat this as very important!

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