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舍众 Abandoning Beings
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Abandoning Beings


Having generated bodhichitta means never forsaking sentient beings, no matter how they may be harming us.


These words are easier said than done. Repeatedly, we have been disappointed by people who, due to their heavy obscurations, never care to show any appreciation, even though we have gone to great lengths to help them. Worse, they return our kindness with enmity. Thus with only a feeble bodhichitta, we are likely to become disheartened and recoil back into a shell of self-interest; as the thought of abandoning sentient beings creeps in, our wobbling bodhichitta collapses into fine dust in no time.


When Chengawa was contemplating a retreat, he was worrying it might constitute abandoning sentient beings. To make sure he would not step over the fine lines of bodhichitta, he made a special trip to Radreng to request Dromtonpa’s advice. The master explained to him: “The moment you think of not benefiting beings is the instant you abandon them. When beings suffer or are losing everything, if you take pleasure in their calamities and offer nothing, great or small, to help, you are committing the downfall of abandoning sentient beings. From your relatives and friends you have assisted wholeheartedly, you get nothing but hostility in return. Discouraged, you swear never to help them again. In this case, you’ve lost your bodhichitta. Therefore, your compassion should be vast enough to embrace even these sorts of beings, accepting them with your good heart. ”


The Mahavairocana Sutra says: “The source of all the Dharma is bodhichitta, its root is the great compassion.” Our obligatory responsibility is to bring happiness to sentient beings while removing their misery with no strings attached. A father does not give up the tough task of educating his unruly son; likewise, we must not shrink from the difficult task of benefiting beings. Even if this path is winding and full of thickets and obstacles, we must forge ahead by blazing a new trail through the brambles.


When you start regarding someone as an enemy, you should search your soul, “Do I still uphold the Bodhisattva’s Vows in myself?”


16th of July, Year of RenWu

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