From a Shinran Follower in the Philippines
Both the English and Chinese versions of You Were Born For A Reason are functioning as a “bridge” between the youth of South East Asia and the teachings of Master Shinran. The first Shinran Follower in the Philippines, Daren Arroyo, is one of them. I’d like to introduce to you a letter by Daren. We can see from it that the circle of our Buddhist friends transcends national boundaries.
My words couldn’t explain how thankful I am to have met the true teacher of Buddhism. I am overwhelmingly grateful to have listened to your online lecture every Sunday. I am one of your countless listeners who continuously listen from the Philippines. I didn’t expect I could be as lucky and as happy as I am now to have the chance to know the teachings of Shakyamuni Buddha.
It was May last year when I met a Buddhist from Japan who shared with me the law of cause and effect. Since then I continuously asked him a lot of questions. I was lamenting the resentment and sorrows underlying my health condition, being a single parent and being deceived by an investment scam. I insisted that we always kneel every night and day in front of Christ statue in order to have great fortune. However, problems were always following us.
Before meeting Buddhism, I tried to talk to our priest. I asked him why such problems occurred in our family. He said, “God gives us problems in order to strengthen us and come back to Him.” I got the same answer when I asked another pastor from a different religion. I just simply wanted to know “why.” I was looking for the cause of my suffering yet most people told me that it was my destiny and that I had to accept it.
When I learned the law of cause and effect, I came to understand that every result has its own cause. I never heard such a teaching in my whole existence in Christianity. Nobody taught me about the existence of a “cause”. I always hear them saying, “It’s God’s plan for you. You suffer from that disease because God knows you can overcome it.” This view made me weak and hopeless.
As I continuously listened to this rare teaching from the true master of Buddhism, my understanding became deeper. I could know that the root cause of suffering is “darkness of mind.” Amida Buddha’s Vow exists to eliminate the dark mind. Amida Buddha created a great ship that carries us across the sea that is difficult to cross. Until I board that ship, I will ceaselessly and seriously listen to Master Shinran’s teachings.
I appreciate your dedication and sincerity to continuously spread the teachings of Buddhism. I wish you good health. There are millions of people, including Filipino, that are suffering now. I hope they get the chance to meet this rare opportunity to listen to the true teachings of Buddhism.
Source: The Buddhist Village Times #43 | 2014, Learning the Law of Cause and Effect Resolved the Enigma of My Destiny
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The Buddhist Village Times #43