What is a good and blessed life? What is a good life? What is a blessed life? Having a lot of money could be a good life. You don't have to worry about any bills, whether it is housing, medical, utilities, insurance, or phone. You wouldn't have to worry about having a roof over your head. You can get a taxi anywhere you want. That is also a blessed life. Some people have a lot of friends, family members, children, relatives, who are always at their side. That is also blessed life. Life blessed with people surrounding him or her. But after all, are those really good and blessed life? What determines what is good and what is blessed?
I once had a conversation with my mother. We were talking about having a good and blessed life. I told her, that we do not have a good and blessed life. Why? Because we have no money for so many things. We only have enough to go by, even for our education. But my mom told me otherwise. She said we are already living a good life! Why is it? Because we have a house! We are blessed, because we woke up this morning. We are blessed because we have food to eat today. We are blessed because we have limbs to use. We are blessed because of so many reasons.
Then I told her that she is right. But more than that, I told her that we have a good and blessed life because we are born in a place where there is Buddhism, especially where authentic Buddhism still exists. I told her that there are places, cities, countries where Buddhism is not practiced. Places where Buddhism isn't even heard of. There are places or people who have fallen into deviant ways or deviant views of Buddhism. We should be lucky that we have good roots to hear and practice authentic Buddhism. That is why I told her we have to treasure this life given to us in this breath, and use it to cultivate, and not disappoint the Triple Gem.
In the end, we should not compare who's life is better or blessed. Blessed, not blessed, good and worse; they are all discrimination made by the mind. If there is right, there is wrong. If there are criminals, there are policemen. Surely, there will be people whose lives have it worse than yours, and better than yours. If you say your life is not good nor blessed, why is it so? Because you have no money? You do not have what you want? What is it that you are lacking that makes your life worse than others? If you look at countries like Nepal or India, they have it worse than you. Some have diseases, no homes, or food. If you may, take a look at veterans. Some lost their limbs, paralyzed, or family members left them alone. So, how is it that your life is worse than them?
If you wanted more, then that is greed. Originally, we came to this world with nothing, and we will leave the world with nothing. Why did we want more and more along the way? What are we satisfying when we want more, desire more? Is that a good and blessed life? Have you forsaken your morality, your wisdom, your friends, families? What have you forsaken in order to have what you called a good and blessed life?
We should be blessed that in this life, we are able to hear the Buddhadharma! It is said that:
The unsurpassed, deep profound, subtle, wonderful Dharma,
In hundreds of thousands of millions of eons, is difficult to encounter;
I now see and hear it, receive and uphold it,
And I vow to fathom the Tathagata’s true and actual meaning.
無上甚深微妙法 百千萬劫難遭遇 我今見聞得受持 願解如來真實義
Therefore we should know by this that we already have a blessed and good life because we are able to encounter the Buddhadharma! Therefore we should not waste our breath away on thinking about whether we have better lives than other people, or whether our possessions are better or more than other people. Since we have now seen, heard, and received, the Teachings, we should uphold them, and vow to realize the Truth that the Buddha wants to tell us. If we are able to practice Buddhism, then we definitely will have a good and blessed life.