The baby is a sentient being who needs a human body, the body of a happy migratory being. This being created good karma and practiced morality in the past, and now is able to be born as a human being. You are helping with the condition for the child to obtain a human body. Whether the child comes from you, Bin Laden, Mao Tsetung, or Saddam Hussein, it is the same. Every day when you pray and recite OM MANI PADME HUM, you dedicate each recitation to all sentient beings. That includes this sentient being, the baby. All the malas of mantras you recite in Vajrasattva retreat, and each time you generate bodhicitta, is for all sentient beings, including this sentient being. Every sadhana you recite with the correct motivation includes this sentient being. At the end, when you dedicate the merits, you dedicate them to all sentient beings, and you also dedicate them to this sentient being. Dedicating all these merits, meditations, sadhanas, deities, mantras, generosity, charity, mandala offerings, preliminary practices, and prostrations to the 35 Buddhas, with a bodhicitta motivation, as a lam-rim practitioner, means that all these things are performed for all sentient beings, including this sentient being.
This being has a karmic connection to both of you; it has past karma with your whole family. That is why this child is being born to you. On the child’s side there is karma with you, and you have karma with the child. It is like that. So, now you have a new responsibility. You also have a responsibility to every sentient being. You have a responsibility toward every hell being to liberate them from the lower realms, from samsara, and not only from samsara but even from lower nirvana and to bring them to enlightenment. You have the responsibility to cause happiness for every single hell being, hungry ghost, animal, human being, asura, sura, and intermediate state being. So, you see, you have a responsibility for every human being that you see on the road, in airplanes, in cars, etc. You have a responsibility for their happiness, to free them from suffering and cause them happiness. We have a responsibility for every single person that we see in restaurants, at home, in the office, in the city, in the shops, at the airport, and in the train station. Whatever nationality they are, however they are dressed, whether they are Black or white, from the East or West, we have a responsibility to free everyone from suffering and its causes and to bring them to enlightenment. It is not just this child. Here, due to past karma, there is a connection, so the child is born to you. But we have a responsibility for every sentient being.
This particular sentient being is born to you, which means you have the responsibility to take care of it. Taking care doesn’t mean only taking care of the child’s body. Most people think only of the body, they don’t think of the mind. Since this child is fortunate to be born to a Buddhist family, it has the opportunity to be Buddhist and to meet the Dharma. This is not just Dharma to achieve happiness in future lives, but to be free from samsara by actualizing the three higher trainings and the whole path and achieving enlightenment by meeting the Mahayana teachings and practicing tantra. You two have discovered Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism, the complete Buddhism, so this child is very fortunate to be born to a Buddhist family with the opportunity to meet the Dharma. Therefore, this child becomes more precious than if it were born to a non-Buddhist family, because there are no obstacles from the parents’ side for the child to practice Dharma, to learn Buddhism, practice Buddhism, actualize the path, and attain liberation and enlightenment. Because it is born to you, you can give him or her special help. This time, this sentient being received a human body, so you should rejoice and be so happy to be able to give a human body to a sentient being. Why? Because it allows a sentient being to practice Dharma. It is your job to take care of the child’s mind. Besides taking care of the body, the most important thing is to take care of the mind by educating the child in Dharma, step by step. As the child grows up, give him or her the opportunity to listen to Dharma, and to practice as much as possible to attain realizations. It should be a great joy that you have the opportunity to give one sentient being the conditions to practice Dharma, to learn not only about liberation but to achieve enlightenment.
Also, the most important motivation for you is to let the child grow up with a universal education, and with a good heart. The child should grow up with compassion and loving kindness, practicing kindness in everyday life toward animals, human beings, to anybody. The child can practice rejoicing whenever he or she sees good things happen to others and aim to fulfill others’ wishes to achieve happiness. Also, the child should learn tolerance and forgiveness. This brings peace to oneself and others. That is how you bring about world peace. If you cannot bring peace to one person, you cannot bring peace to the world. So, you have to start with the people nearest to you and animals. Then, one by one, that is how you can bring about world peace. When you bring peace to ten people, you bring that much greater peace to the world. Then, you can bring peace to 100 people, everyone in the world, and then all sentient beings. We develop our minds and bring peace to all sentient beings. Finally, we can bring all sentient beings to enlightenment.
It is very important for world peace to practice forgiveness and also to apologize. If one has harmed others, hurt others, then apologize. If others give you harm, practice forgiveness. Bring peace to yourself, in your life, in your heart, in others’ lives, and others’ hearts. You should aim to bring up the child this way. First, you train in teaching a universal education to your child, then you can be a teacher for others. When you have a child you should think positively, then everything becomes positive and the child will have a good life. I am not talking about a good worldly life, with a nice house, good money, job, lots of friends and children, not just that.
When the child grows up and becomes a parent, then it sets the same example for its children, your grandchildren. Then, the grandchildren also become parents and educate their children, your great grandchildren. You should plan in this way from generation to generation. The time and effort you put into education helps future generations to actualize a good heart.
Whatever you give the child in order to take care of it, such as education, is Dharma practice, charity. The child gives you the opportunity to practice charity and morality, to not harm others and only benefit others. Also, the child gives you the opportunity to practice the paramita of many years of patience. You become the teacher of patience. The child came especially to teach you patience. Buddha Shakyamuni practiced patience by sacrificing his life for sentient beings, for example, offering his limbs, eyes, and body to a tiger. Not only that, he offered his body to thousands of ants. He cut off his limbs and what was left was thrown in the garbage dump. Then, what was left over was cherished by the ants.
Buddha practiced the six paramitas not just for one year, two years, or one or two lifetimes, but for three countless great eons. Now, this child is giving you the opportunity to practice charity, offering it food, shelter, clothes, and money, also to practice the paramitas of morality, patience, perseverance, and concentration (always keeping your mind virtuous when dealing with the child). Then, there is also wisdom and emptiness. The child is giving you the opportunity to practice the six paramitas so you can achieve enlightenment quickly.