Nurturing Others

Nurturing New ShootsTake a moment to think back, way back, to when you were a small child. Now moving slowly forward, try to remember each and every person who taught you, who nurtured you, who moulded you, in even the smallest way, into the person you are today.

It is all too easy to forget these people at times, and also to forget that we have a responsibility to help others grow.

Grass and trees cannot grow without soil. The ‘soil’ that fosters our growth includes our parents and grandparents, teachers, seniors, our mentor, community and company. In any case, everyone has some special place where they grew up, or someone who nurtured them.

Human beings grow as a result of this nurturing ‘soil’, in which they express their ability and make the flowers of their lives blossom, just as the spirit of the rice plant returns to the soil and the stem sprouts to flower and bear grain once again.

We should repay our debts of gratitude to this ‘soil’ in which we developed. This cycle of repaying gratitude will envelop our whole existence. Our true humanity will never blossom if we seek only to develop ourselves.

It’s A Boy … Now What?

A Right Royal AnnouncementWith all the news frenzy surrounding the birth of a baby boy to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Kate and Wills to you and me, and wishing them all the very best for the future, I was reminded of this explanation, by Daisaku Ikeda, of a relevant parable from the Lotus Sutra.

Every child is precious.

The Lotus Sutra tells the parable of the three kinds of medicinal herbs and two kinds of trees. There are many different kinds of plants; their shape, size and nature come in myriad varieties. Some plants grow fast while others take time to mature. In this parable, however, the heavens rain upon all the plants equally, nurturing their growth. And the plants blossom and bear fruits according to their own unique character.

This parable symbolizes the Buddha’s vast compassion to nurture all living beings despite their differences. All children are different; each possesses his or her wonderful unique quality. We must pour upon all children our great love and compassion so that each child can blossom, true to his or her unique quality.

~ Daisaku Ikeda

Given that this heir to the throne will have every opportunity in life, it cannot be overstated how important it is that they are given the room to grow naturally, and allowed to remain a child as long as possible.

Suffer Not Little Children

Every Child Is PreciousListening to an article on Radio 4 this morning, attacking the tutoring of pre-school children, I was reminded of this explanation, by Daisaku Ikeda, of a relevant parable from the Lotus Sutra.

Every child is precious. The Lotus Sutra tells the parable of the three kinds of medicinal herbs and two kinds of trees. There are many different kinds of plants; their shape, size and nature come in myriad varieties. Some plants grow fast while others take time to mature. In this parable, however, the heavens rain upon all the plants equally, nurturing their growth. And the plants blossom and bear fruits according to their own unique character.

This parable symbolizes the Buddha’s vast compassion to nurture all living beings despite their differences. All children are different; each possesses his or her wonderful unique quality. We must pour upon all children our great love and compassion so that each child can blossom, true to his or her unique quality.

~ Daisaku Ikeda

Whilst we should nurture children’s’ growth, we should also give them all the opportunity to remain children as long as possible.

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