Thursday, January 13, 2011
Reflections on filial love and karma
On loving and respecting your parents…Years ago, there was this person who has been taking care of his sick father. The sick father was old and bed ridden. The son finds it a burden to him and his wife. He thought to himself, his father is of no useful to the family anymore and thus it will be a good idea to get rid of him
So, one day he puts the sick old man in a basket and carried him on his back. Together with his 10 year old son, they walked for miles into the edge of the forest. At the edge of the forest just before letting the old man down, the 10 years old son then asked his father, “what are you doing with grandpa? Why carry grandpa to this place?”
The father then informed his intention to his 10 years old son. That grandpa is of no use to the family anymore. It’s better for the family if they leave grandpa there in the forest.
As the father was lowering down the basket from his shoulder to leave grandpa in the forest, his 10 years old son reminded his father not to forget to bring back the basket. The man then pondered and asked his young son why he should bring the basket home.
The young son replied, he would need it when the father himself grows old and sick one day. He too needs that basket to transport him here.
With that, the man realized that what he is about to do to his sick father is wrong. Years to come his son will do the same onto him when he gets old and sick. Quickly, he lifted his old father back into the basket and together they walked home.
This story bring two important points, filial love and karma
Many times we forget the debt of gratitude we owe to our parents. Have you noticed how frail and defenseless a human being is at birth? Without our parents, (or the persons who raised us like parents) there is no way we could have survived in this world. Whether in good times or in bad times, they are your parents for life. Whether in good health or in sickness, we must take care of them and give them as much love as they had given to us when we were young. Unfortunatedly, in our modern society, we see parents just as a burden.
On the same token, we should not forget the law of cause and effect. When we perform unwholesome actions, if affects negatively our Karma. Karma is compared to a bank account, the more good actions you perform, is like putting more money in the bank. Unwholesome acts are like doing withdrawals to your account and eventually, all our karmic debts will have to be paid.
Karma is not dependant on any external force, there is nobody to judge, punish you or send you to hell for your unwholesome acts.
You are your own judge, and you create your own hell, or your own heaven. It is your choice...
The best guideline for a rightful living and attaining Nirvana comes from this definition of Buddhism.
“Avoid all evil, embrace all goodness and purify one's own mind “