we are going to conduct a ceremony of generating Bodhicitta or the mind
of enlightenment, I feel that, regardless of whether we are able to
actually develop a true aspiration for the attainment of full
enlightenment, for the benefit of all sentient beings, what is most
important is to develop the resolve and determination that today, at
this place, on this occasion, we will make a pledge to enhance our
capacity for warm-heartedness and develop a genuinely altruistic mind,
aspiring to help other sentient beings.
Sometimes, because of our human nature, it can be very effective to
participate in a group ceremony like this with other fellow human
beings, saying prayers and reciting verses together, with a strong
determination to develop a kind heart. A sheet of paper with three
verses has been distributed, and the recitation of these verses is the
actual ceremony of generating Bodhicitta.
I will briefly explain the meaning of these three verses. The first
verse is a formula for taking Refuge in The Three Jewels - the Buddha,
Dharma, and Sangha. By reciting this verse, you are mentally seeking
Refuge in The Three Jewels and developing faith based on admiration and
appreciation for the deeper qualities of the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.
In a sense, you are emulating the example; just as they have become
fully enlightened, you also aspire for that state of enlightenment. Then
you state the objective, which is to be of service to all other sentient
beings and that you are seeking Buddhahood.