by Venerable Bodhicitta from International Centre for Inner Peace and Happiness, Dandenong
Hate does not lead the way to peace, only love leads the way to peace.
In this month falls the day of Vesak, where Buddhists celebrate the birth, enlightenment, and the death of the Buddha.
The Buddha spent all his life teaching us the importance of letting go of negativity and developing goodness and wisdom.
The Buddha showed us that while it may take great skill to tackle all our issues purely through unconditional love, it truly is the only viable option if one intends to live in peace and let others live in peace.
The Buddha encouraged us to develop and gradually perfect ten qualities which are essential to leading a peaceful life. These ten qualities are:
– developing generosity and giving up miserliness.
– developing morality and giving up immorality.
– developing renunciation of greed.
– developing wisdom.
– developing effort to give up evil and cultivate goodness.
– developing patience.
– developing honesty and giving up dishonesty.
– developing determination to be good in the face of adversity.
– developing loving kindness to all beings impartially and giving up hatred and violence.
– developing equanimity in the midst of the vicissitudes of life.
These are the 10 qualities, when perfected, transforms a normal person into a noble person.
In these difficult times where we are faced with unrelenting challenges, it is easy to feel hopeless. However as human beings one of the greatest gifts we possess is the ability to think carefully and come up with solutions that lead to peace and harmony.
The ability to think in this benevolent way distinguishes us from animals who lack the ability to always think in a selfless way that leads to peace and harmony for all.
We are fortunate to have had great messengers of peace, now is a good time to investigate the teachings of those great masters to find peaceful solutions to our current problems.
All the teachings of the Buddha were given to imperfect people.
However, when those teachings were carefully considered and practised, those imperfect people became perfect noble beings.
The Buddha had trust in the capabilities of human beings to attain perfect goodness and wisdom, so let us now practise ardently and become noble beings.
As long as we uphold goodness, and we believe in the fact that only goodness will bring the best solutions to our problems, then we can have hope that we will find peace in our lives, society and the world at large.