How to become good members in family

How to become good members in family

Good evening Professors, lecturers and students,
Dear friends!

Today is Wednesday, May 25, 2011. My Dharma name is Venerable Thich Trung Sy and my Dharma brother’s name is Senior Venerable Thích Nguyên Kim. We are from Co Lam temple. Having received the invitation from Seattle University, and being guided and allowed by the Most Venerable Thich Nguyen An, the Head of Co Lam Temple, we are very happy to come here to present and attend this religious Seminar at this University organized by Professors. This evening, the main speakers are Senior Venerable Nguyên Kim, Catholic Priest Thành, Youth Leader Mr. Sơn, and Venerable Trừng Sỹ.

My topic presented here is “how to become good members in family.”[2]

As you know family is a cell of society, the primary educational unit of society, a basic and steady foundation of loving education. In family, parents play very important roles of professors in teaching their children love, peace, and happiness. Children that are students learn love, peaceful joy, and happiness.

Loving father, loving mother, or loving our children, first of all, we must be authentically present right here and nowfor our loved ones. Being present right here and now is for us to listen and learn what our loved ones say. When he or she says something good, we learn to uphold and develop that theme. When he or she says something non-good, we also learn, recognize, and eliminate it gradually. Something we would like to stress here isloving speech and deep listening. If father and mother say, they love their children, but they do not stay at home, they are not present here and now, they are always busy doing business, they do not have free time to play with their children, to eat, drink, sleep, take a rest with them, and to look after their children.

Therefore, according to the author, in each day and night, in twenty-four hours of watch, we should put aside time of at least two hours, one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening to take care of our children’s studies, eating, drinking, sleep, rest, and life. When we guide our children and practice like this, it is easy for them to become good members of our family, good students at school, and good workers or officials in society.

However, wanting to teach our children well, we who must be exemplary wife or husband live our mindful and awakening lives by applying and practicing loving speech and deep listening in our daily lives. When the wife says something angry, husband has to practice the conduct of listening with his unprejudiced, non-judgmental and non-opposed mind. Waiting for his wife to finish speaking, at that time, the husband starts to speak skillfully and flexibly. Conversely, when the husband angers, the wife also has to practice to listen deeply to what her husband is speaking. Waiting for her husband’s to finish speaking, the wife begins to confide and share in right and wrong, happy and unhappy things.
But, over the course of practicing loving speech and deep listening, sometimes she speaks out loudly by responding to her husband with upset words while he is speaking. Conversely, while His wife is speaking, he also responds to her with his unpleasant words, but both husband and wife realize that actions of their rough responses are unlovable and do not bring the good results and benefits to both. At this point, a person with practice is different than a person without practice. Initially, if husband angers and says something unharmonious, his wife tries to listen to what her husband says and understands about 20 percent, gradually building up to 40, 60, 80, and 100%. 


Cultivation is the process of transforming; transforming non-listening into listening, transforming anger into joy, transforming frustration and suffering into peaceful joy and happiness; happiness for oneself and for one’s relatives and the loved ones in one’s family. We know that loving speech and deep listening are the conduct of practice of gentle Mother Avalokiteśvara.[4] Those who practice the conducts of loving speech and deep listeninggather flowers and fruits of authentic peace and happiness for themselves and for others in right here and right now in the present life.


One more thing, when saying something, if the wife or husband has to speak at the right time, at the right place, and with the right object, her or his speaking gets meaningful and valuable. Conversely, if she or he does not speak at the right time, at the right place, and with the right object, her or his speaking has no meaning and no value.
In the family, the wife and husband practice like this, they are happy, their family is happy, and their children are also happy. We should remember the wife’s happiness is also the husband’s happiness, and vice versa, the husband’s unhappiness becomes the wife’s unhappiness and the children’s unhappiness. If we understand and practice like this, our family is happy, our children and we feel peaceful and joyful.

Kính chúc quý vị thân tâm thường an lạc!
Cảmơn quý vị đã lắng nghe và theo dõi!
May all of you be peaceful and happy all the time!
Thank you for your attention!

[1] Đề tài này trình bày sẽ mất khoảng 15 phút. Xem tin tức của đại học Seattle qua website
[2] This topic presented will take up about fifteen minutes. See Seattle University news through website
[3] This Bodhisattva has the capacity to listen to human beings’ cries to save them.
[4] Vị Bồ tát này có khả năng lắng nghe tiếng kêu khóc của chúng sinh để cứu giúp.

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