I trust you can get through this
In my recent meditations and reflections, it sometimes occurs to me that when a feeling arises in me, it would suddenly explain what a word really means, rather than the other way around. It’s interesting how while each word is supposed to be representing a genuine sense, or essence behind, sometimes we say them too often and forget their meanings.
I made a resolution to myself lately, that I would not linger on, regret, or feel guilty for what’s happened in the past, unless they bring motivations for actions in the future. It helped me relieve myself from a lot of past behaviours which cannot be reversed, and see myself objectively as just another person trying to act with their best ability to lead a good life.
Each of us carry various sizes of baggages from our pasts. After all, they are what makes us us. They reveal themselves on our faces, in our blood, in how we speak and walk. But the past can be used in many different ways.
When we choose to carry them as baggages, they become constraints to our present and future. We can be trapped in a self image that’s formed by how we were in the history, and our hands tied with limited options for how we think we are supposed to be, or what we believe we deserve. For what we had done that were unskillful, we could resent ourselves for it, while close the doors in our minds to others for their possibilities to become better.
But without the past, we also can never learn and become smarter. We had fallen before, therefore we know to walk with carefulness. Having walked carefully, we then know to have faith in certain qualities to be worth holding in life.
I’d like to look at each person as a line on a chart with different starting heights. Many about ourselves are outside of our own control, like who our parents are, our skin colours, etc. But the course of our lives can be worked on by us becoming smarter every day. In this way, no one is judged by what they can’t control, but only recognized for their efforts to make the best out of his situation.
This view can also be applied on each day, each second, and each moment. We are all reborn as a person with control over his behaviours, his words and thoughts at each changing second. If we had said something bad to someone in the morning, we can choose to apologize at any moment if we realize it was our mistake. It’s a forgiveness and a source of energy not only to ourselves but also to others around us. We choose to recognize the qualities of strength, objectivity and skillfulness lying behind each intention we observe, then we are able to understand their efforts.
The understanding of reincarnation really opens one’s mind to the flow of lives beyond time and space. From a long long time ago, we all had lived in different shells as animals, ghosts, gods and humans. All animals, ghosts, gods and others had once been us. We had been in a similar position as any living person today, being rich, being poor, joyous or suffering. When turbulence is the only unchanging nature of reality, we really cannot judge anyone for what they appear to be at this moment. All we can do, is choose to give unconditional support, to inspire with our own behaviours their exploration into reaching a better future.
Sometimes I’d like to think of this as the nature of parenthood.
If people with scattered minds
Have given but a single flower
As an offering to a painted image,
They shall gradually see numberless Buddhas.
If they bowed in worship,
Or merely placed their palms together,
Or even raised a single hand,
Or gave a slight nod of the head,
As an offering to the images,
They shall gradually see countless Buddhas,
And have, themselves, realized the Buddha Way.
They will rescue countless multitudes,
And enter Nirvana without residue,
As a fire goes out when the fuel has been consumed.
If people with scattered minds,
Enter stupas or temples,
And say but once, “Namo Buddha,”
They have realized the Buddha Way.
- Lotus Sutra, Chapter Two
My friend, all will come around. I trust you can get through this.