“Spiritual strength and resilience is essential to help us face disasters with calmness and kindness. It is important that we cultivate our minds and nourish our spirits with a lot of positive and wholesome qualities, such as patience, moral virtues, fortitude, perseverance, right understanding and wisdom.
“As with the aftermath of MH370, many groups are now rushing to organize prayer sessions for fatalities of MH17, the most recent heart-wrenching incident to afflict Malaysia. Understandably with the outpouring of grief, people would want to ‘do something’ for the victims of this tragedy.
“But besides just ‘praying’, Buddhists should reflect on the transiency (‘Anicca’) and the unsatisfactory nature (‘Dukkha’) of life. Without proper understanding, we shall always be subjected to grief, lamentation and sorrow.
“Prayers may be helpful to the living; yet they have limited benefit to the deceased. But one who has cultivated spiritual strength (‘bāla’) and lived a wholesome life would have no fear of death. He who has lived wisely and wholesomely rejoices here and hereafter (‘idha nandati pecca nandati’).
“We should develop spiritual strength to face the vicissitudes of life. With spiritual strength, we can face the changing fortunes of life with courage, forbearance, and serenity.”