The benevolent Universe and Shariputra’s eye

Two projects that I had been working on for several months fell through.  These were projects in the charity sector- ones that committed me to give money, labour and time.  However, it appears that the people who were to be the recipient of these humble gifts did not want them now, having initially told me to go ahead.  I felt like Shariputra, a disciple of the Buddha, who practiced the Bodhisattva way.  One day, a Brahmin begged for Shariputra’s eye, and Shariputra gave it to him. But the Brahmin being revolted by the smell of the eye and threw to the ground and stamped it into the dirt. Following this rejection, Shariputra gave up the Bodhisattva way of life and fell into endless suffering.

Often we are willing to give anything to others and yet they reject our offer of love and kindness.  Should that make you stop? You can think of the endless sacrifices you have made to get that far and appeal to their heart; or argue your case with logic and try to appeal to their head.  But they won’t listen.  What do you do?

Simply, you don’t stop.  You don’t go Shariputra’s way and fall into endless suffering, berating yourself and others.  You don’t stop being yourself- kind, good and benevolent.  Why?

Because that is the way of the Universe.  Josei Toda, a 19thC Buddhist philosopher, who viewed the Universe, the earth and mothers as bearers of life, said,“The activity of the entire Universe is essentially a function of compassion.”  The compassionate and benevolent Universe has a way of bringing gifts to you that are not loaded or selfish.  So even if you offered your gifts to someone and they were rejected, someone else will value them.  The Universe does not disappoint because it is an endless storehouse of treasures for everyone.

So I replied to these people- “something else always comes along and the funding can be used elsewhere.  Best wishes, Sumita.”

That way I left my heart’s door open without any criticism, any resentment or suffering for theother gifts of the benevolent Universe to come through.  And as I write this, I had a telephone call which gave me a great benefit and I am sure others will follow.  Please keep your heart’s door open for the rainbow of gifts that the Universe sends us.