There Should Not Be a Day that Is Spent Meaninglessly in Our Lives

While reading the chapter of “The four and eight kinds of suffering”, I realized that although I enjoy various things in my daily life, doing so is like rejoicing over a mere charade. Having been shown that my future is dark and helpless as I must die, I realised that I was forgetting the most important thing in my life and I could not help but cry.

We are rushing toward the crucial matter of the afterlife. However Master Shinran declared to us that there is a great ship: Amida’s Vow. The unbelievably vast world we enter upon boarding the great ship was described with “the ten kinds of happiness in the present life.” Each kind of happiness is so wonderful, and I feel like it is so wondrous that I’ve come to know of the truth and am now seeking it.

Though I listen to the wonderful Vow of Amida, sometimes I wonder, “Is this true?” or “Surely there’s no way I could achieve that?” and start to feel hopeless and lonely. I learned that Amida Buddha created the Vow in order to lead us to absolute happiness, but as we don’t know what will happen after death or how true the Vow is, we do not completely let Amida Buddha help us.

Having also learned that there is no way to be saved without going through Amida’s 19th Vow of doing good deeds, I felt I have already been included in Amida’s great plan.

Olympic athletes devote their lives to the Olympic Games, but I am in the process of acquiring something even bigger than them. I need to be ready for it and I must not spend even one day in a meaningless way.

Natsumi Mukai, Tokyo

Source: The Buddhist Village Times #37 | 2014, There Should Not Be a Day that Is Spent Meaninglessly in Our Lives

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