Chan Master Sheng Yen

‘The process of maturing involves both leaving behind concern for yourself and reorienting yourself to the benefit of other sentient beings. Then you will be ready to bear inconvenience, trouble. and suffering on others’ behalf. To save sentient beings from suffering, as Buddhists vow to do, requires that you give whatever is needed – time, money, or all your effort. When you give, it might seem that you lose something, but that is only the view of selfishness. A bodhisattva, an enlightened being, has no thought of loss or gain. It is the well-being of other sentient beings that is important.
To voluntarily abandon your own benefit, to actively help, and when necessary, to suffer for the sake of sentient beings, is the correct attitude, or “right view”. When our actions in the interest of others are voluntary, our own suffering diminishes. It is when suffering and vexation are involuntary that they are difficult to bear. Those on the Bodhisattva Path, even if they are only at the beginning, must disregard their own benefit despite the discomfort this may bring. If the sentient beings we help do not express gratitude, we should have no regrets. This is wisdom and compassion.’ (Subtle Wisdom)

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