Baby Blessing Ceremony
(This event is open to all members of the
Dharma community, their families, and guests. The babies, as well
as older children, will be present.)
- The leader welcomes everyone and gives an
introductory talk about the preciousness of the parent-child relationship
and the value of Dharma in a family.
- Parents welcome their babies (see
- The community welcomes the babies (see
- Children's Aspirations for the Parents (see
- Parents' Aspirations for the Children (see
- Chanting and Blessing (see
- Dedication (see below)
My Dear Child,
As your parents, we welcome you to this new
life and wish you everything good in it. Even though we were strangers
not long ago--we do not know who you were just two years ago--we love
you. We will do our best to provide for you materially, give you
a good education, and care for you in all circumstances.
As your parents, we will have a caring
relationship and communicate well with each other, for we know that
is the best way to let you know that this world is a loving place.
We will live ethically so that you will learn good habits from observing
how we live. We will work to subdue our anger and to learn good
skills for resolving conflicts so that you will have good role models
for this. We will smile, laugh, and share our affection so that
you will feel comfortable doing the same.
You do not belong to
us. You belong to all the Buddhas and bodhisattvas. You belong to
all sentient beings in this universe. We want to enable you to share
your love and talents with others and the world. Similarly, we also
belong to the world, and we will take the love we have for you and
spread it to all living beings everywhere, because love is not something
that is limited in quantity. By loving you and loving each other,
we will learn how to love all other beings as well.
You have come into
this world with your own karma. We cannot control everything you
do or everything that happens to you. We will do our best to nurture
your positive predispositions and help subdue your negative ones.
We will do our best to protect you, knowing that as much as we would
like to, we cannot prevent you from ever experiencing suffering.
You will learn through your own life experiences, and we will do
our best to give you the skills to make wise decisions and to handle
situations creatively and with kindness.
We will do our best to raise you so that you
will be aware of your own Buddha nature--the basic purity of your
mind that is your potential to become a fully enlightened being.
The seeds of love, compassion, generosity, ethical discipline, patience,
joyous effort, concentration, wisdom, and other wonderful qualities
already exist in your mind. We will help you to cultivate this aspect
of your Buddha nature too. We want you to have a self-confidence
that is based not on transient, superficial factors, but on a deep
awareness of your own inner goodness.
We know that we and you will make mistakes
in life and that sometimes we will be in conflict. But realizing
that all of us have this precious Buddha potential, we will still
respect each other and do what we can to help each other.
We have given you this human body and pray that you will have a
precious human life, one in which you not only meet the Dharma and
fully qualified spiritual masters, but also have trust in the Three
Jewels-the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha-and practice the Dharma.
The Community Welcomes
Our new and dear Dharma friends in baby bodies,
We are delighted to
welcome you to this life and to our Dharma community. Please know
that you always have friends, teachers, and playmates here. Our
community is a place where you can give and receive the Dharma,
friendship, and help.
May you develop a kind heart in all that
you do. May you realize the three principle aspects of the path--the
determination to be free; the loving, compassionate bodhicitta;
and the wisdom realizing reality. May you quickly attain enlightenment
and be able to benefit all living beings.
May all sentient beings have happiness and its
May all sentient beings be free of suffering and its causes.
Mall all sentient beings not be separated from sorrowless bliss.
May all sentient beings abide in equanimity, free of bias, attachment,
for the Parents
Homage to the Buddhas and bodhisattvas of the
To my kind mother who kept me in her womb for many months. To my
kind father who supported my mother physically and mentally. May
my wish for my kind parents be fulfilled--that they don't fall sick
and that their lives be filled with joy and peace.
Right after I was born you warmed me with the
heat of your body. You cleaned my runny nose, poop, and pee without
disgust. You fed me and made sure I was safe. I wish that this good
relationship between my parents and I increases.
As a baby, when I was thirsty, I didn't know
how to drink. When I was hungry, I didn't know how to eat. When
I was cold, I didn't know how to put on clothes. When I was hot,
I didn't know how to take off my clothes. When I had a bug on my
face, I didn't know how to brush it away. I always turned to my
parents for help. Now I know how to drink, eat, and do many other
things. I won't forget how my parents took care of me when I was
little. I wish that I may always be ready to care for my parents
when they need me.
My parents look at me with loving eyes,
care for me with a compassionate heart, and call me sweet names.
I wish to return the loving looks, the care, and the tender names.
Sometimes I have a bad temper, am moody, or
greedy. Sometimes I nag and pester my parents and think only of
myself. My parents are faced with the unpleasant task of having
to discipline me, so that I will learn how to be a good member of
society. I wish to be good-natured and appreciative of the kindness
that surrounds me and to be kind to my parents and others in return.
Parents Aspirations for
May these children live long, meet the Dharma,
benefit others, and live a meaningful and fulfilling life. May they
have good health physically and mentally. May they develop a kind
and loving heart towards all living beings. May we help each other
on the path to enlightenment in this and all future lives.
Everyone chants the mantra of Chenresig (the
Buddha of Compassion)--om mani padme hum--visualizing Chenresig above
the head of each baby. Light flows from Chenresig into the babies,
purifying, protecting, and bringing all realizations of the path
to enlightenment. While everyone is chanting, the leader blesses
the babies by touching symbols Buddha's body, speech, and mind (Buddha
image, sutra, and stupa or bell) to each baby's head.
Due to this merit may
Attain the enlightened state of Guru Buddha,
That we may be able to liberate
All sentient beings from their sufferings.
May the precious bodhi
Not yet born arise and grow.
May that born have no decline,
But increase forever more.