From loving kindness and compassion, the mind of enlightenment arises.
The mind of enlightenment, bodhicitta, is defined as the resolution to attain ultimate enlightenment so that one may be of greatest benefit to all sentient beings, just like Shakyamuni Buddha himself.
Shakyamuni Buddha also first generated the mind of enlightenment, then accumulated wisdom and merit, and eventually attained enlightenment, through which he benefits countless sentient beings.
We are followers of the Buddha, and particularly we are Mahayanists. We must cultivate not only the abandonment of non-virtuous deeds and defilements but also the accumulation of loving kindness, compassion, and the mind of enlightenment. In this way, we will be able to attain enlightenment for the sake of all sentient beings.
His Holiness Sakya Trizin
If it weren’t for the adored bridegroom
Of appearance as mere dependent origination,
The loving bride of emptiness
Would be no better than dead.
Emptiness is the most lovely bride,
A ravishing beauty beyond compare.
If he ever became separated from her,
That handsome bridegroom would be fettered in shackles.
Therefore, trembling with anxiety,
Bride and bridegroom turn to the guru,
Whose inborn kindness for them
Places their love right back to its original, innate state.
Ah, the genuine guru’s sagacity
And great skill are so wonderful
That those two become originally indivisible,
Nonreferential, and unsurpassable.
This couple is endowed with the abundance of all characteristics
And is free from the two extremes.
It is the nature of all that is, yet lacks a nature of its own —
Thus it always flourishes.
Be ambitious about the magnitude of the motivation you arouse. Don't settle for simple kindness when nothing less than the fully-fledged mind of bodhicitta is what is needed.
Kyabje Dudjom Rinpopche said that dharma practice is really not that difficult, it's all a matter of motivation. So never forget to arouse the motivation of wanting to bring all sentient beings to
complete enlightenment. And the more magnanimous your motivation, the more merit you will accumulate, even when all you do is light a candle.
If you light a candle merely as a decoration for the living room, your motivation is that of an ordinary person.
If you light it with the wish to accumulate merit and eventually destroy samsara, you share the attitude cultivated by shravakayana practitioners.
To light the candle with the wish that any merit attained be dedicated to the enlightenment of all sentient beings, your attitude is the same as that of bodhisattvayana practitioners.
To consider the candle to be the light of wisdom that ilmuinates all sentient beings, with the aspiration that wherever its light falls becomes the mandala, is the attitude of a tantric practitioner.
Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche
Real compassion is without attachment. Pay attention to this point, which goes against our habitual ways of thinking. It’s not this or that particular case that stirs our pity. We don’t give our compassion to such and such a person by choice. We give it spontaneously, entirely, without hoping for anything in exchange.
His Holiness the Dalai Lama