Lecturer: Master Cheng-Yan
Subject: Walking the Tzu Chi Path with a Buddha Heart(人間菩薩行六度)
Every year at this time, Tzu Chi volunteers from around the world who are going to be certified will gather here in Taiwan. No matter which country you are from, I always have the same expectation of you… I hope that every one of you can diligently walk the Tzu Chi Path and make vows to do so. To walk the path, we must make the Four Great Vows… Living beings are incalculable, and we vow to deliver them all; afflictions are infinite, and we vow to end them all; Dharma paths are innumerable, and we vow to learn them all; Buddhahood is supreme, and we vow to attain it.
This is also the core of our Jing Si Dharma lineage. Since we are Buddhists walking the Tzu Chi path, the spirit and principles we follow must be upright. We need to make great vows to deliver all living beings as there are many people suffering unspeakably.
Just now, we saw the video on Tzu Chi’s work in 2012. In the part about January, we heard our U.S. volunteer, Si Cheng, say in Haiti…
(Tzu Chi volunteer from U.S. Brother Cheng )
This is what Master wishes to do. As her disciple, I will do my best.
See how dedicated he is. He does what I wish to do and loves those whom I love. After Haiti was hit by a quake in 2010, Tzu Chi volunteers went there to provide emergency relief for three months.
Following that we started planning to rebuild three schools for a Catholic organization in Haiti. The construction is about to complete now.
Whenever a disaster strikes, Tzu Chi volunteers always mobilize immediately to provide timely aid and stay behind to give people continue care.
At the same time, we’ll also work to sow the seeds of love by inspiring the locals to serve as our volunteers so that they can continue to care for those in need.
Take for example our Zulu volunteers in South Africa. Upon receiving the rice from Taiwan, they distributed it to several countries, including Swaziland, Lesotho, etc.
When they first went to these countries to survey people’s needs, many people doubted what aid they could possibly bring as they thought people from South Africa are poor, too. However, our volunteers kept interacting with them with a Bodhisattva heart while also sharing Tzu Chi with them with humility, love and patience. When our volunteers eventually went to give aid, some of the aid recipients asked our volunteers when they would bring aid to them again. Our volunteers replied: “We are not here to give you material supplies only. What we really wish to bring you is spiritual wealth.”
Indeed, helping people isn’t what only the rich can do. The poor can also give to help others and such a deed is even more praiseworthy. This time, several of our Zulu volunteers came to be certified, and I also shared with them that although Tzu Chi does not have a large physical cultivation ground, in each of our hearts, there is a spiritual cultivation ground.
This time, nearly 2,000 overseas volunteers came to be certified, and within every one of them, there is a spiritual cultivation ground. The Buddha says that everyone shares the same Buddha nature, so everyone can become a Buddha. It’s just that we give rise to a deluded thought, and so, greed, anger and ignorance arise in our minds. These are the three sources of our afflictions, which can bring about disasters in the world.
Indeed, all natural and manmade disasters result from the greed in people’s hearts. I often say that when we have one, we want nine more. When we have ten, we want a hundred, and when we have a hundred, we want a thousand. People always want more, and are never content with what they have.
But if we can change our perspective, we will be able to give one when we have ten. I often say that Taiwan’s true treasure is the kindness and love of its people.
This time Superstorm Sandy has indeed caused great devastation to the U.S. Northeast. So, Tzu Chi volunteers in the U.S. went to the streets to solicit donations. They bowed to everyone respectfully, but most people donated coins only. Seeing that, I started calling on. Tzu Chi volunteers worldwide to help collect donations in their countries. Tzu Chi members in Taiwan also worked very hard to fundraise for Sandy survivors, and many made very large sums of donations. Over the last few decades, Taiwan’s economic growth has increased by leaps and bounds, and so has its people’s love. Seeing that, I truly feel that the people of Taiwan are very kindhearted. With such a Buddha heart within everyone, I hope they can further cultivate themselves spiritually by walking amongst people to serve in line with the Buddha’s teachings.
Everyone, we do not have a huge physical cultivation ground, but the spiritual cultivation ground within every one of us has no limits or boundaries as it is intangible and cannot be measured.
When you return to your countries, please bring back with you such a true heart of spiritual cultivation as well as what you’ve learned from one another during your stay in Taiwan this time. All this is what you can take in to heart and bring back to your countries. It is my hope everyone can live out the Buddha’s teachings in their daily living. What I hope even more is for everyone to serve as a living bodhisattva. This has always been my wish. So, I hope you can take my mission as your own and work to guide everyone to learn the Way and the Buddha’s teachings so that they can further inspire others to do the same.
(Source: Da Ai TV 人間菩提)