365 Days for Travelers: Aug 14

BODHI ARISES FROM GREAT COMPASSION

If a bodhisattva obliges all sentient beings, then he
is also obliging, and making offerings to all buddhas.

If he honors and serves all sentient beings, then he
is also honoring and serving the Tathagathas.

If he gives happiness to all sentient beings, then he
is also providing happiness to all buddhas.

Why is it so? Because the mind of great compassion
is the essence of all buddhas. Because there are
sentient beings, great compassion develops. And
from great compassion, the Bodhi mind is brought
forth. And because of the Bodhi mind, buddhas
attain perfect enlightenment.

TEN CONTEMPLATIONS ON GREAT COMPASSION

The bodhisattvas, mahasattvas* observe sentient
beings through the ten contemplations and give rise
to the mind of great compassion. What are the ten? They are:

Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings without reliances;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings with hearts in discord;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings lacking wholesome roots;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings in their long slumbers;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings doing unwholesome deeds;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings shackled by desire;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings drowning in the sea of life and death;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings constantly surrounded by pain and suffering;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings without yearning for the wholesome Dharma;
Giving rise to great compassion when
seeing sentient beings lost and without the Dharma.

* Mahasattvas, meaning “great beings,” is another name for bodhisattvas.