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Week 10 – Filial Piety Sutra (2/3)

“The first verse of praise on the virtuous kindness of protecting the foetus – it is very difficult to be born as human. We are able to attain a human form only after many rounds of rebirth for many kalpas*” “Besides we also must have close affinity with our present parents who provide the suitable conditions for us to come to this world.” “At around the fifth month, the vital internal organs of the foetus are developed gradually. At the beginning of the sixth month, the six senses – eyes, ears, nose, tongue, body and mind are developed.” “The weight of the foetus increases daily. The mother feels as though she is carrying a lofty mountain.” “The foetus kicks and moves about in the womb. The mother is never at ease as she feels as though she is undergoing the fury of earthquakes and windstorms.” “The mother always worries about her child. As she is very tired, she seldom cares to dress up. All her fine clothes and mirrors are put aside.” “The second verse of praise on the deep kindness of enduring suffering on the verge of delivery – after carrying the foetus for the full ten months, she is going to deliver the child.” “Every morning, the mother feels as though she is seriously sick. She feels sluggish and drowsy.” “Her worries and fears are indescribable. She gets very anxious about the baby and cries whenever she thinks about the safety of the baby.” “She will tell her relatives and friends sadly, ‘I am not worried about myself. I am just worried that death will befall my baby!'” “The third verse of praise on the kindness in forgetting her suffering after the delivery – as she has exhausted her energy in delivering the child, she feels as if all her internal organs are being torn apart.” “She struggles painfully and many a time, she falls unconscious. For the sake of her child, her blood flows out profusely just like when a sheep is being slaughtered.” “After surviving such an agonising experience, on awakening, her first thought is to enquire after her child.” “When she knows that her child is safe and sound, she is full of joy, holds him tightly in her embrace and smiles with relief!” “But her joy does not last long as she is again afflicted by unbearable pain. Previously, she has forgotten her pain in her joy over the newborn baby, but now she has to endure the agony of a painful body again!” “The fourth verse of praise on the kindness of swallowing the bitter taste while giving the delicacies – the kindness of parents is deeper than the sea. With unbounded love and concern, they take care of their children throughout the day and night!” “Parents’ love for their children is indescribable. They will never be displeased with their children.” “Parents are comforted when their children are warm, full and happy. They do not mind enduring the sufferings of hunger and cold themselves.” “The fifth verse of praise on the virtuous kindness of shifting her child to a dry and comfortable position while she remains at the wet spot – the loving mother takes meticulous care of her child. At night, when the child wets the bed,…” “…the mother will quickly move the child to a dry place while she remains at the cold and wet position without any grumbles!” “As long as her child can sleep in comfort, she does not mind her own discomfort.” “She breast-feeds her children and brings them warmth and health. Her embrace is the sagely refuge for her children.” “She will cover them with her sleeves so that they will be protected from the cold.” “Parents take good care of their children, hoping that they will grow up happily and healthily. Many a time, the mother cannot eat well or sleep well in her anxiety over her children.” “The sixth verse of praise on the deep kindness in breast-feeding and nurturing the child – the kind mother resembles the great earth which supports and nurtures the myriad forms of life.” “The stern father resembles the vast sky which protects and nurtures all living beings under its shelter. The father’s love for his children is the same as the mother’s.” “The virtuous kindness of all parents is the same. As long as you are their child, they will never dislike you no matter how ugly you may be.””And they will never get angry or be disgusted with you even if you are physically deformed or crippled.” “On the contrary, they will love you more and give you extra care because you are their beloved child. The kindness of our parents is indeed very great!” “The seventh verse of praise on the loving kindness of washing away the filth – Mother was once a beautiful lady with a well-adorned body and a pretty face which was comparable to a cottonrose hibiscus.” “She was vibrant with energy and healthy. Her eyebrows resembled the young and fresh willows.” “Her rosy complexion glowed with youthful vigour.” “However, for the sake of her children, she so overworked herself that her beautiful looks were lost and she became old and haggard.” “Her hands which were originally smooth and soft are now rough and covered with wounds and cuts due to too much washing for her children.” “The kind mother is indeed a pitiful yet respectable lady. For the sake of taking care of her children, she sacrifices her precious youth unconditionally in exchange for a tired and haggard look!” “The eighth verse of praise on the deep kindness of thinking of her child who has to travel afar – it is indeed unbearable to lose our loved ones in the event of death.” “It is also unbearable to be separated from the child who has to travel afar. The mother is sad as she is separated from the child by great distances.” “Day and night, the parents always think of their child. They pray to Buddha and Bodhisattva to protect the child, hoping that the child will come back safely as soon as possible.” “Some children just leave their homes for many years without sending any messages to their parents. The old parents are drowned in tears day and night, looking forward earnestly to the return of the child.” “Just like the old and heartbroken ape in the jungle that has lost its young, their wailing is indeed sorrowful and unbearable.” “The ninth verse of praise on the deep kindness of understanding and sympathizing with their children – it is indeed difficult to repay even one part out of ten thousand parts of the deep kindness of our parents!” “Just as the saying goes, ‘It is impossible for a fine strand of grass to repay the benefits it receives from the sunlight in three springs!’ When a child has to undergo hardships and sufferings, the kind mother will pray throughout the day and night, wishing that she can undergo the sufferings on behalf of the child.” “She only hopes to takes upon herself the hardships and sufferings of her child. A mother’s love is truly very great!” “When a child has to go on a journey, the kind mother’s thoughts are always with the child, worried that the child may not be able to endure the cold weather.” “She is worried that the child may be unable to endure the suffering. If she were to know of the child’s slightest sufferings, she would be so sad that she would not be able to sleep at night.” “The tenth verse of praise on the deep kindness of showering immense concern over her children – the loving kindness of parents resembles the brilliance of the sun and moon which shines on all corners of the Earth!””In the passing of every moment, the parents are always thinking of their children.Such kindness is indeed very deep.” “Their thoughts are always with their children, whether they are staying with the parents or away from home. Even if the parents are a hundred years old, they would still be concerned over their 80-year-old child.” “If we were to say that there must come a time when they could love us no more, then it must be only when they were no longer in this world!” “After expounding on the ten types of great virtuous kindness of our parents, the Buddha told Ananda, “By contemplating the myriad of sentient beings,…”

…(to be continued)

You can download the apps “IDharmaBook” to get the ebook in Itunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/idharmabook/id390054391

Book Title: The Buddha’s Teaching On The Difficulty In Repaying The Deep Kindness of Parents (Filial Piety Sutra)

Published by: Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery, Awaken Publishing & Design

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