Happy Mother’s Day: repaying all mother sentient beings for their kindness


Happy Mother’s Day!

“…In all, my parents took great care of my life with much suffering, creating bad karma by making other beings suffer so that I would be happy.

Moreover, because my present mother has been my mother in countless human lives, she has been infinitely kind to me since time without beginning.

Nagarjuna said,

The amount of milk we have drunk from one mother is greater than the amount of water in the oceans.”

If all the milk I have ever received from my mother could be collected it would fill infinite space, and I could continue to drink it in future lives. Similarly, the food received from her is as infinite as space, and all my past ka-kas and pi-pis, the result of that food, would fill an infinite, immense extension. So would the clothes she gave me, the immense ocean of tears she shed out of worry for me, and the numberless bodies she sacrificed to protect my life.

Besides the kindness she gave me as a human, there are those she gave me as different beings.

I received exactly the same amount of benefits from each sentient being. Therefore, as my present mother has been infinitely kind to me, so has every other sentient being.

Receiving Bodhicitta depends on having Great Compassion. This depends on Great Love, which comes from the unselfish love that sees only beauty.  This can be easily achieved by considering sentient beings as mother and remembering their kindness to me. This is done because living beings cherish, of the two parents, their mother more than their father.

Even worldly people feel the responsibility of repaying help received from their mother or from other people, even if this help is in small, insignificant things. For instance, this help may be in satisfying my desires, by giving invitations to parties, food, or cups of tea, or by saying one or two sweet, empty words, pleasing to my ears. Also, even deeply ignorant animals such as dogs help their master in return for kindness received, so why can’t I do the same?

Yet, repaying mother sentient beings in their worldly needs is not enough nor is it the best way, because it can’t extinguish their suffering or its cause.

The best method of repayment is by helping them with the true realization of Dharma, because this helps them to stop all interrupting mind, and so to receive Enlightenment.

~ Lama Zopa Rinpoche (The Wish Fulfilling Golden Sun of the Mahayana Thought Training, Lama Yeshe Wisdom Archive, http://www.lamayeshe.com)

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