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Dawn. A beacon of light shone through the sky.

A group of novice nuns marched vigorously towards. Accompanied by laity on either side, they were on their way to receive their precepts. Suddenly, in nimble footsteps, a laity came to my side and continued to walk at the same pace. “Mom!” I whispered, breaking the silence. A smile flashed across her face. She motioned for me to be mindful of my thoughts and continued to count the prayer beads in hand. Together, we walked in silence.

Through streets and alleyways, my mother was always by my side. Occasionally, she’d point out the rugged road conditions; once in a while, she’d remind me of my mantras and prayers. All of this would be done in whispers or a wave of the hand, never any excess words or gestures. Step by step, we only grew more devoted and sincere.

It wasn’t hard to imagine how she’d found me amongst the group of monastics. What I couldn’t understand was how she’d managed to suppress her words after running into the daughter she hasn’t seen for years. Even if there are endless blessings and joy left unsaid, she chose to walk with me in silence and peace, just so I could successfully receive such auspicious precepts.

I too thought silently to myself. If I hadn’t noticed her first, perhaps she wouldn’t have taken the initiative. She would’ve kept to herself and given her daughter the most precious gift of peace. Not only does this peace symbolize wisdom, but also a different kind of love, a companionship beyond the secular world.

Thank you, mother, for accompanying me with mindfulness and peace.