I was reading Jack Kornfield’s The Wise Heart, and in the final chapters he talks about the bodhisattva vow, and it reminded me of why I’m not too keen on it. The vow goes something like this: I vow not to accept enlightenment until I’ve helped all other sentient beings into nirvana.
It strikes me that it is a never-ending commitment. There will always be more human beings born, and to help them all into enlightenment is a fool’s errand. It means you would be avoiding your own destiny forever, and you’d likely in the long run either break your vow or stop being a bodhisattva.
A commitment to help others is a good thing, but the way this vow is stated seems to me unreasonable, and undermines the whole reason of a search for enlightenment.