MeditationMeditation for PeaceThe Mother of Great Kindness within the HouseBuddhism contains teachings on ways to maintain a warm, gentle familyBuddhism contains teachings on ways to maintain a warm, gentle family that have been used as a reference by people for thousands of years. It is also certain that many modern theories about family dynamics can be found in Buddhist doctrine. Moreover, Buddhist texts contain an even more thorough understanding of family dynamics than today’s theories.The points contained in Ten Suggestions from a Father to His Daughter on Her Wedding Day resulted in a daughter becoming an important figure in her husband’s family. Her becoming an important figure in her husband’s family. Her husband, his parents, and his relatives gave her love, respect and kindness. She eventually became known and praised as The Mother of Great Kindness within the House.Who was Lady Visakha?Visakha, a supreme Upasika [a Buddhist laywoman], was a very important person in Buddhism. She was responsible for the construction of Wat Buppharam, one of many ashrams, a center that helped spread Buddhism throughout India during the time of the Lord Buddha. The temple was built in the town of Savatthi, in the county of Kosol. An enormous fortune was spent to construct a two-level residence that contained 1,000 rooms for the Bhikkhus.Furthermore, she was also the first person who requested permission from Lord Buddha to offer robes to the Bhikkhus to use during the rainy season retreat. This offering became a tradition that Buddhist devotees maintain to this day.Visakha was born into a wealthy family in the county of Magadha, the largest county at that time. Her father was named Tanachai.Once, when his county was in an economic crisis, King Pasantikosol of Kosol made a personal request to King Pimpisan of Magadha that Tanachai become the minister of finance for his county. King Pimpisan consented and Tanachai moved from Magadha to Kosol, bringing his daughter with him.When they reached Magadha, which was 112 kilomelers from the capital of Kosol, Tanachai asked King Pasantikosol, “The city is small and I have a large number of retinue with me. It will be inconvenient to live in the city. I request permission to build a new town in this comfortable part of the county.” The king granted his request and Tanachai developed a new town named Sakethu. This name of this town can be found in Indian history and it still exists today.Lady Visakha also had a grandfather whose name was Nenataka who was one of the richest men in Magadha. Her family had a very important role in the economy of both counties during the time of the Lord Buddha.The Mother of Great Kindness within the HouseTen Suggestions From a Father to His Daughter on Her Wedding DayWhen she came of age Lady Visakha was to be married to the son of another family in Kosol. Her father gave her the following advice.1. Do not let the internal fire become external. Do not reveal any family problems for the people outside the family to know.2. Do not let the external fire come within. This means to not bring external problems into the house.3. Give to those who give to us. If we are capable of helping those who need it, we should. Then, if they are capable, we may rely on their help if we are in need.4. Do not give to those who give nothing to us. If you are taken advantage of by people to whom you offered assistance, or if they refuse to help you when you are in need, then do not help them again and do not rely on their help in the future.5. Whether they give or not, be generous to our relatives. If our relatives have fallen on hard times and seek your help, you should help them even though they may never return the things we lend them. They are still our relatives.6. Make sure that the food is amenable. One should make sure that the meals served to the family are wholesome and that the relatives are taken care of when it comes to food.7. Find an appropriate place to sit. This means one must know and show the proper level of respect. For example, it would be disrespectful to sit on a higher place than one’s mother-in-law. Showing appropriate respect at the dinner table will allow for a peaceful mealtime.8. Find an appropriate place to sleep. One should make sure that the sleeping area for each person in the family is appropriate. Be prepared to rise before anyone in the family and to retire after everyone else. Make sure you take care of all business before going to bed so that you will rest peacefully.9. Be respectful of the fire within. The anger of your in-laws or your husband can be compared to a smoldering fire. While they yell or scold us in anger, be still and do not argue with them. In that situation, angry words will only make the situation worse. It is better to wait when they are no longer angry before gently explaining the situation.10. Pay homage to the angels. Whenever your husband’s relatives or your husband perform a good deed, try to praise them and encourage them so that they will continue their good behavior.Lady Visakha employed these ten suggestions that her father gave her to win the hearts and affection of her husband, her in-laws, and retinue. It became a tradition for women who were about to get married to study them, even to this day. Any family who has a wife or a daughter-in-law who practices these ten suggestions is said to have “The Mother of Great Kindness within the House.” Please help lessen her burdens and take good care of her for the peace and happiness of the children and family in the future.
The Mother of Great Kindness within the House
Buddhism contains teachings on ways to maintain a warm, gentle family that have been used as a reference by people for thousands of yearsDhamma Articles > Meditation Articles and Techniques > Meditation for Peace
[ Feb 1st, 2012 ] - [ : 10762 ]