Date: October 7th, 2010 (Thursday)
Lecturer: Master Zheng-Yan
Subject: Holding On to Our Vow to Walk the Bodhisattva Path 千里求法意志堅
A Tzu Chi volunteer, Lin Sung-yuan comes from Malaysai said:
"I can’t wait to see Master, but at the same time it saddens me when I think of how we can see her for a short while and then we’ll have to return to Malaysia."
"I’d like to tell Master that I want to follow her life after life and I will carry out Tzu Chi’s missions diligently."
"Although I cannot be by Master’s side, I will work very diligently and very hard."
See how Tzu Chi members share the same heart in walking the Bodhisattva Path as well as in taking the Buddha’s heart and my mission as their very own.
They are firm in faith and they put what they know into practice.
They believe that the Bodhisattva Path they walk on is a broad, straight path (to Enlightenment), so they make vows to walk the path and move forward diligently.
Such courage and diligence like that of a Bodhisattva is truly very touching to see.
Over the last four days, our trainee volunteers from 13 countries gathered in Taiwan for a volunteer training camp.
They have been taking part in Tzu Chi’s work in their countries of residence and are all determined to talk this Bodhisattva Path.
They paid for their own airplane tickets and traveled a long distance to be here in Taiwan.
Some of them live far away from Taiwan and the tickets are quite expensive.
Yet, despite having to travel so far, their will to come to Taiwan has never wavered.
When they finally returned to the Abode in Hualien, it felt just like family coming home from abroad.
They came back to learn from our volunteers in Taiwan and see how they carry out Tzu Chi’s missions and inspire others to join them.
They are very eager to learn, and that’s why they were willing to do whatever it takes to come to Taiwan and learn.
I am very grateful to our volunteers in Taiwan.
Although there have been several camps lately, everyone tirelessly gives of themselves to serve at one camp after another with peace of mind like that of the Buddha.
See how Tzu Chi volunteers never said: “I’m tired. Why are there so many camps and so many people coming one group after another? I need a break.”
They never say that.
Every time I go to see them, I will ask: ”Is it tiring?”
And, they always reply, “No, it’s not. We’re happy to do this.”
Seeing how joyfully and willingly they work without considering it hard work, I am very touched.
This shows how they have reached the state of Buddhahood where their mind is serene and peaceful and their will to benefit others is firm and unwavering.
They give for the sake of our newly inspired volunteers so they may be here to learn and bring back what they’ve learned to their countries of residence to further inspire and guide even more people.
So, be it here in Taiwan or overseas, everyone must work to nurture the Bodhi seed in the hearts of people around us.
This is what I very much hope for because only then can this Earth be full of forests of Bodhi trees.
For such forests of Bodhi trees to be possible, the only way is to diligently sow and nurture the Bodhi seed in the heart of every person.
This is what we must dedicate ourselves to doing very mindfully.
I’m truly very grateful for the training camp this time.
In fact, I’m grateful at all times.
Seeing how our Tzu Chi volunteers in Taiwan work so hard to organize one camp after another, my heart truly goes out to them.
Among the volunteers serving at this camp, there were some who had stayed back after helping out at the last camp as they hoped to form affinities with more people.
That’s why when the last training camp ended, many volunteers stayed back to help out at this training camp.
Among them, some actually have cancer and they are only in their 40s.
My heart truly goes out to them.
Despite being seriously ill and having undergone chemotherapy or multiple surgeries, they’re still willing to serve.
Some even stayed for two consecutive camps as they wished to serve more people.
Seeing how they give of themselves, despite being tormented by cancer, my heart truly goes out to them.
But they are truly very brave and are just like the ferryman described in the Sutra of Innumerable Meanings (無量義經).
Despite being sick, as long as he has a boat, the ferryman can still carry people across the river in his boat.
Although the ferryman is ill, so long as he still has the boat, he’ll be able to ferry himself and others to the other shore.
See, this is how dedicated and mindful these volunteers are.
They set aside their own illnesses to care for others and see how they have gained joy and peace from the work they do.
Not only volunteers from Taiwan, but those from overseas are also the same.
"My name is Zhang Wei-fang. I am from Malaysia. I have terminal stage cancer."
"When I first fell ill, I had to watch Master’s programs on Da Ai TV as they are indeed my source of comfort."
Having come to learn about Tzu Chi, she was determined to come to Taiwan.
So, she asked her doctor if she would be able to fly to Taiwan.
Because she has terminal stage cancer, she said she could not wait until next year as it could be too late.
That’s why she insisted on coming this year.
She kept asking other volunteers when she could come.
She has been waiting and asking since April this year as she was determined to come to Hualien to make a vow before me.
A Tzu Chi volunteer, Zhang Wei-fang said:
"The moment I arrived at the Abode, I made a vow I want to come to Hualien every year."
"Now I want to make a great vow before Master."
"I want to fully dedicate myself to serving others with unconditional love. Like Master, I want to devote my life entirely to helping others and I vow to follow Master in walking the path of Tzu Chi."
Yesterday, when I heard her speak, my heart truly went out to her.
She is very frail as she has terminal stage cancer and she is a Christian, yet she was willing to do all she could to come see me and vow to follow in my steps.
I am very moved by what she has done.
Every person has a touching story to tell.
For those from China, they had to spend a large sum to come here.
Yet, they were still willing to come as they wanted to make vows before me and also to return to the Abode, which is the spiritual home of every Tzu Chi volunteer.
See how all these volunteers from 13 countries speak different languages but share the same heart.
It truly is very touching.
May we all hold firmly to our resolution to create a land of Buddhas so that our Earth can become a Pure Land full of living bodhisattvas who share the same vow to benefit others.
(Source: Da Ai TV 人間菩提)