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I woke up to see the sun shining all around me…
Why would it shine down on me?…
Just had to ask myself,
‘What’s it really for?’


— What’s It For?
(Yoko Kanno)

The worldly yet noble tend to speak of saving the world. This is in terms of addressing pressing issues of injustice to suffering humans and even animals. Not to be missed are global climate crisis issues, which also affect humans and animals. Out of natural gratitude and universal compassion, we should of course do what we can. However, there is the question of whether what we do is worth the effort and enough, since we will all die soon. Even the next generation, whose welfare is fought for now will perish later, while still being trapped in rebirth, which perpetuates suffering cyclically and ‘senselessly’. This is why a higher and spiritual goal transcending this life is needed.

Our fleeting worldly welfare has to be transcended, with it merely as the foundation for rising up to spiritual wellness that transcends this life. This is the quest for True Happiness, as in lasting happiness. With this in mind, the truly noblest thing we can do is to guide one another to True Happiness. Again, since we will die, while it is not easy to attain enlightenment here and now, we should ensure there is rebirth in Pure Land, where liberation is guaranteed. To push the existential question of ‘What is our ultimate purpose?’ all the way, what do we do after we are enlightened there?

To be enlightened is to have transcended the worldly. This liberation is transcendence. However, as gratitude and compassion will be fully awakened to, the noble mission of saving the world will continue, even more fully. There will be manifesting back to all non-Pure Lands to better guide all to Pure Land too, to also transcend. This return is transcendence of transcendence. As those enlightened via Pure Land will realise selflessness and skilful means completely, there will be neither exhaustion nor exasperation. With unending ease and joy of guiding more to True Happiness, this is surely True Happiness!

Transcending transcending,
the Buddhas re-manifest
as Bodhisattvas transcending.


— Shilashanti
(Transcendence Haiku)

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