All issues are within the scope of these four words -- good, evil, cause, effect.

(Continued from issue #259)

Instructional Talk by Dharma Master Heng Gwei on November 20, 2016,
during Lunch at Gold Wheel Sagely Monastery Emperor Liang's Jeweled Repentance Dharma Assembly

How do we save the world? As stated: Do no evil; accord with all that is good. Everyone should turn towards what is good and not what is bad. From the top leaders down to ordinary citizens, we must use the brilliance of wisdom to smash the darkness of ignorance. If we can do this, then we can turn the world's negativity into positivity; we can turn wars into peace. We are living a muddled life and dreamlike death in this long and dark night. We need radiance to combat this darkness. Darkness induces melancholy; radiance brings joyousness. The delineation between darkness and radiance resides in one's mind. This means that when the mind is good, it is radiance; when bad, darkness. The mind can either create or destroy the world. All of us who practice Buddhism must get rid of our false mind and maintain a true mind. Thus, Buddhadharma is a precious lifesaver that rescues the world and its people, as well as a jeweled mirror to better our minds.

Worldly matters always have two sides íV the good and the bad. For example, when we watch TV, we get to know what is happening nationally and globally. Often said, a scholar knows the ways of the world without stepping out of his house. This is the good side. However, there is a flip side. Oftentimes, kids get adversely influenced by what they see in TV. They learn acts of deception and mayhem, disrupting family and society. These kids become wayward adults, stirring up trouble everywhere. If they become our future leaders, can the world be peaceful? This is TV's adverse effect. If we care for our next generation and the future of this world, we must prohibit children from watching TV, or simply not buy television sets at all. This is the most thorough way to cut off the roots of disasters.

At present, the world has reached a miasmal point. What can we do? As part of humanity, we must start with ourselves. Get rid of our bad habits. Clean up the three poisons in our minds íV greed, hatred, delusion. Be an exemplary role model to influence others. Start with having proper behavior and thinking. Then, you can advise others to turn towards what is good. Lead by example; otherwise, it is all empty talk and no help to the situation.

People who take on the world as their own responsibility have a compassionate mind. It is like Shakyamuni Buddha who endured extreme suffering when he practiced the Bodhisattva Way. Why did he do that? In order to encourage living beings to cultivate according to Dharma so that they may leave suffering and attain bliss. "Enduring suffering is ending suffering; enjoying blessings is exhausting blessings." Let us make this our motto.

"Wholesome, evil, cause, effect". All problems are within the scope of these four words. Evaluate all problems from this perspective. Be it big problems that concern the nation and the world, or small problems that concern the changes in our own destiny, everything follows the principle 'Such is the cause; such is the effect.' Whatever we have done in the past, whether we remember or not, resides within the scope of 'wholesome, evil, cause, effect'. One thought of ignorance brings forth the three poisons of the mind. Because of our ignorance, we fall under the control of the three poisons (greed, hatred, delusion), doing all unwholesome deeds. Therefore, having encountered such wonderful causal conditions and such precious opportunity, we must cherish this wholesome root. Go on nourishing this wholesome root.

When our wholesome root has sufficiently grown, our bodhi resolve will be steadfast, allowing us to walk securely on the Bodhi path.

Time flies. We must have unwavering faith. We must bring forth our true mind. The more we bow, the more we must feel ashamed of our misdeeds. We must earnestly repent and reform in front of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Amitabha.

(The End of the Article)