I watched a few episodes of Lisa Ling’s “This is Life” last year and the title of her TV show made me think of the circumstances we presently face. I’ve often thought over the years that my (our) battle is one of truth and justice or good versus evil. I felt out numbered all these years in the fight for justice, when it seemed the evil was stronger than the good. Last week I realized that this battle is also for life itself.
In Buddhism, life encompasses both birth and death as well as both sentient and insentient beings. The term “Buddha” or “Buddhahood” literally means “enlightened one,” but also means life in its purest form. Buddhahood – described as a state of life that is free, open, and harmonious – is achieved by chanting Nam Myoho Renge Kyo.
Although I never gave much thought as to how I would describe this state of life (Buddhahood), Second SGI President Toda described his feelings after attaining his realization in prison:
It is like lying on your back in a wide open space looking up at the sky with arms and legs outstretched. All that you wish for immediately appears. No matter how much you may give away, there is always more. It is never exhausted.
“Living Buddhism” February 2017, p. 13
The image this brings to mind is one of a young child lying in a grassy field on a summer day staring up at the blue sky and the white clouds. The last two sentences make me think of love: “No matter how much you may give away, there is always more. It is never exhausted.”
“No matter how much love you may give away, there is always more love. It is never exhausted.” Love isn’t something we run out of, or only have in limited supply. It can be given to or shared with one person or many. I think we have an unlimited amount of love to share with each other.