Lecturer: Master Cheng-Yan
Subject: 20130323---Cherish Water and Have a Peaceful Heart (珍惜水源調心地)
Date: March 23, 2013
We store water buckets here. When it rains, we take it out to collect rainwater. We have to make this into a habit (Some
consider it troublesome to do this,) but once we’re used to it, it becomes a habit. Do you want to save water or not? If you don’t, you’ll find doing this troublesome.
Right now, water levels around Taiwan continue to drop to a seriously low level. So, we can see how Tzu Chi volunteers (are using water smartly). They also installed pipes at various corners of their roof. When it rains, the rainwater will go into the buckets. With this small act, they can collect and cherish every single drop of water.
I heard Master say that humans can’t live without water. Not having three meals a day is not as bad as going without water. That’d be unbearable. So, I really treasure water. Indeed, we really can’t live without water. How are we supposed to survive without water? Water is critical to us and to the world. Normally, we don’t realize we should cherish water. We ignore its importance. But, we should truly treasure water now.
Today is March 23, 2013. On this day in 2006, a huge fire broke out in a slum area in Zamboanga City, Philippines and destroyed more than 2,000 homes. Most families impacted by the fire were poor. The fire destroyed their homes, and they lost everything. For four consecutive days, Tzu Chi volunteers provided hot meals and distributed aid to care for these 2,000 plus families.
That was truly not easy. Recently, on March 7, another fire broke out in Manila, Philippines Tzu Chi volunteers also
quickly went to help. In the year 2012 there were more than 3,000 fire incidents in the Philippines according to its Bureau of Fire Protection. Every fire incident could destroy several hundred homes.
However, after the fire, some survivors aided by Tzu Chi are volunteering with Tzu Chi now.
My income is very meager. Yet, donating to help others makes me feel very happy I used to be a victim of a fire incident I
urge everyone not to get too worried. But you should learn from this disaster. You’ll be able to gradually recover from it. (She was a recipient of Tzu Chi’s love and care)
So, with a heart of gratitude, she volunteers with Tzu Chi now. This is called the cycle of love. It’s all about people’s hearts. We have to purify people’s hearts in order to bring peace to our society. If people’s hearts are not purified, there will be many crises in our world. (Seeing the violence in Myanmar,)
I can’t help but wonder: “Why must people act in such a way?” (It started as an argument) between a shop owner and his
customers. What did religion have to do with it? Just because the people were of different faiths and somehow got into an argument, it escalated, with 200 people fighting in the streets. Once the violence broke out, it spread. Now, at east 20 people are dead. (So, when people’s hearts are no longer innocent,) then one wrong thought can lead to violence that causes so many deaths and casualties.
So, the most important thing is to foster a peaceful heart and balanced mind. Then such things would not happen. It’s just like what the sutra taught us; there are many ways we can give support to people, which will bring happiness to ourselves and others. For example, one time the Buddha said that when we see others helping people in need, we should rejoice in it and praise them.
Though we don’t have the ability to help people, when we see other s helping those in need, we should quickly praise
them because it is good deed and deserves to be praised. Rejoicing in others’ good deed also creates merit. One monk asked.
“if I praise them,” “will I get merit and thus lessen their merit?” The Buddha than gave an analogy. If there’s candle that’s already lit up and a lot of people come to light their candle with the flame from this candle, will the brightness of this original candle be diminished? (No). Of course not. Will it make the room brighter? (Yes). So, when a candle is lit, we need many people to come light up more candles, and spread the light so that a dark room can be lit up and become a bright and beautiful space.
I learned a lesson from (Tzu Chi), which is, we mustn’t wait in helping people. When something is right, we have to just do it. Especially after we’ve received (help), we have to seize the opportunity to help others. Though the world we live in now is a world full of impurities, we should give encouragement to one another.
When we see people doing good deeds, we have to praise them and help them sincerely, from the bottom of our hearts. Receiving such praise and support, they will be happy and even more motivated. This is why should give each other support. Our world really needs people helping one another, or people supporting those who help others, or people rejoicing in others’ good deeds (These are three ways we can) (participate in giving)
If we can help others, encourage people to help others, and praise people for their good deeds, then at the same time, (we commit three acts of giving)
So, it’s not hard to do good deeds. If we can all do this, wouldn’t our world be full of peace and harmony?
We also see that at the Vatican, the new pope has called on people of different faiths to live with one another in peace. When people encourage one another to live peacefully and harbor goodwill towards others then it will easy for our world to become like a paradise or like a pure land, enabling people to have a good life.
In a word, all kinds of crises and troubles (arise from people’s minds being deluded) Nature’s imbalance and ensuing
disasters are the consequences of our lifestyle and its negative environmental impact (which have accumulated to cause climate change) (So, to restore Nature’s balance,) we must first change our life style and mentality and also learn to
live in peace with one another. We need to purify our heart and mind and have a broader heart (and be less complicated in our thinking) and instead, with a heart of simple goodness, respect and have gratitude toward others and do good
out of selfless love for all people.
Then, wouldn’t the world have peace and harmony? This isn’t impossible to achieve. So long as each of us is willing to approach all people and matters with a pure heart and uncomplicated mind, the everything can be very peaceful .