My Mother, My Dharma Protector:
I took the 8 precepts online today and after lunch my mum just asked me to leave the dishes, she said, “I will help you guard your precepts.” The words melted my heart and streams of gratitude made my eyes moist. Since young, our mothers have been sheltering us. Now, despite that we are all grown up, their concern didn’t change and that really moved me. I recalled a statement made by another classmate that says, “Only when you become a mother, then you will be able to feel for your mother.”
After lunch, I palms together, my mom received the first bow from me.
My First lesson on Generosity：
In my vague pre-kindergarten memories, I will tag along with my mother to the wet markets. On the way back, there is an Indian prata shop. Often sitting on the steps outside, was a dark skinned, frail-looking uncle, wispy white hair, long beard, stained white shirt and sarong. In his hands, he had a plastic cup. He just sat, listless. Mother gave him 10 cents. Eyes opened wide, his iris and sclera were clearly distinct. He just nodded, revealing a smile. That is when I found out that his teeth were very white! At a young age, I felt shy and uneasy, I gave a tight smile and went off.
“Mum, why did you give uncle money?”
“Uncle don’t have money for meals, I’m giving him a little so he can buy something to eat.”
Following that, the few times I got to see this uncle sitting outside the prata shop, mum will get me to drop five or ten cents in his cup.
Ten cents, is my first lesson on generosity.
My Mom’s Compassion:
Not long after my mum studied Lamrim, I found her weird. Once there was a cockroach running in the hall, my mum was trying to catch it, blurting out, “Oh, oh, oh, little pals, don’t run!”
“Little pals?” I heard it right and replied in disbelief, “Mum, that’s a cockroach!”
“That’s right, we shouldn’t kill. I’ll let it take refuge and release it.”
I was so stunned ‘like vegetable’ and find my mum really ‘weird’. Now, after I have started learning Lamrim for almost five years, I think I am starting to be ‘weird’ like her.
Master Jih-Chang mentioned in his discourse, the root of compassion is love: “How the first four personal instructions – recognition of all living beings are your mothers through the development of love – act as the causes of compassion.”
I really appreciate my mum’s persistence in introducing Lamrim to me – With all gratitude, thanks mum! And thanks to our compassionate Buddha, Master and Teacher, who are like mothers to me. For despite all odds, you have spoken to benefit all sentients beings! Thank you!
Thank you for reading, may you be happy, always!
Accumulate Merits through Sangha & Light Offering
This year we’ll probably celebrate Mother’s Day in quarantine.
To stay close to your Mother, you can do a Mother’s Day Special Offering to Buddha and Bodhisattvas for her.
This will bestow divine blessings for her health and well-being. What better way to show your love and filial piety then making this offering as a gift for your beloved Mother.