慶生的意義The significance of a birthday celebration
Last Sunday, the 18th Day of the 5th Lunar Month, was the birthday of my Guru Master, Grand Master Living Buddha Lian-Sheng.
I bought a birthday cake from a Japanese bakery at Takashimaya. I selected a delicious chocolate cake with a colourful assortment of fruits toppings, which convey hope and abundance to anyone who see it.
After dinner that night, I gave free consultation to the servers in the restaurant hoping to form more positive affinities. Some servers displayed poor attitude, a lack of sincerity and mannerism and kept repeating the same questions with suspicion to my given answers. Some gave me a red packet as a token of gratitude, while others left with a word of thanks. The fact that they came forward to me meant an affinity between us. As long as there is a small chance for me to propagate kindness, I do not want to miss it. I take this also as a chance to guide the lost young people around me. If they ignore my advice, it would be their own doing.
After that, I spent the next few hours teaching my students how to introduce their Grand Master and present the Dharma to others.
Typically, many people celebrate their birthdays with feasting and merry making. For my birthday, I would always intend myself to do at least one meaningful thing. Furthermore, that day carried much more significance as it was the birthday of my Guru Master! Admittedly, I do not possess much material wealth to make an offering to my Guru Master but I knew His greatest hope is for me to apply what I have learnt from Him to benefit other sentient beings. So I make a conscious effort to be very diligent in my work and with the merits generated from my endeavors, I offer to my Guru Master as my greatest present to thank Him for His relentless teachings.
The day we were born was the day our mothers underwent excruciating pain to deliver us into this world, after bearing us for 9 tough months. If the only thing we do on our birthday is self indulgence and ignore the chance to do something meaningful and add real value to our lives, what significance is there in such a celebration?