We all know that death is a certainty, but we often think that death is still far away for ourselves and our loved ones, making us take the gift of life for granted.
Last year in June, my family and I had to face the inevitable with the sudden passing of my father. We were unprepared… My father wasn’t very old, in fact he was relatively healthy for a man of his age. He was not obese nor did he show any signs of developing an illness. And yet so suddenly, we lost him to a single episode of a heart attack.
I still vividly remember the day that unexpected incident occurred. That day, H.E. Tsem Rinpoche’s students were gathered in Kechara Forest Retreat to attend the monthly Dorje Shugden kangso. My mother and I had been attending these pujas for months while my father, although not personally involved, had always been very supportive of our Dharma practice.
Strangely, on that particular day, my father had decided to join in the prayers. I remember being very excited and happy for him. It was his first time attending our monthly Dorje Shugden kangso but he already had many friends in the Dharma centre. Being a cameraman by profession, he had spent much of his free time volunteering in Kechara’s production house.
Not knowing what would happen just an hour before the prayers started, my mother and I went out to town for dinner. It was during this time that we received a bunch of messages and calls from friends in Kechara… they informed me that my father had passed out in front of the prayer hall and had been immediately rushed to the nearest hospital in Bentong. By the time my mother and I arrived at the hospital, my father had already passed away.
I can’t explain in words the grief of losing someone I have admired and loved from the moment I was born… At the same time, I was thankful to have my Dharma friends with me at that point of time, when my family was feeling so vulnerable. I felt that it was Dorje Shugden’s great blessing that things turned out the way they had… My father having to pass away on that day was inevitable. If he had not been moved to attend the puja with us on that day, my mother and I would not have spent those precious final hours with my father; and my father would have collapsed and passed away at home, alone… instead he passed away in such a holy place, receiving the blessings of the Buddhas until his final breath.
I was told that during my father’s final moments, he was happily chatting with his friends in the gompa; and at the point of his collapse, there was no sign of suffering. Although I am sad at having lost my father, I am also glad that he did not have much suffering at the time of death… I also remember what Pastor Niral said, that Hindus pray their whole lives to have a painless death in a holy place, just like what my father experienced.
I am forever thankful and grateful to Dorje Shugden for his blessings as my family found great comfort in doing his practice daily. I have seen how the loss of a central figure in the family can cause much grief and even ‘destroy’ the harmony… but in my family’s case, it pulled us closer together, and made us feel closer to Dharma.
Please support us so that we can continue to bring you more Dharma: