Buddhist scholars like Kenneth Ch'en have argued that the teaching of filial piety was a special feature of Chinese Buddhism as a response to the Chinese culture. Others, among them John Strong and Gregory Schopen, have shown that filial piety was also important in Indian Buddhism, but Strong does not consider it integral to the belief system and Schopen did not find evidence of it in early writings he examined. In this article, through an analysis of early Buddhist resources, the Nikāyas and Āgamas, I demonstrate that the practice of filial piety has been the chief good karma in the Buddhist moral teaching since its inception, although it is not as foundational for Buddhist ethics as it is for Confucian ethics. The Buddha advised people to honor parents as the Brahmā, the supreme god and the creator of human beings in Hinduism, as parents have done much for their children. Hence, Buddhism teaches its followers to pay their debts to parents by supporting and respecting them, actions that are considered the first of all meritorious deeds, or good karma, in Buddhist moral teachings. Moreover, according to the Buddhist teaching of karma, matricide and patricide are considered two of the five gravest bad deeds, and the consequence is immediate rebirth in hell. Mahāyāna Buddhism developed the idea of filial piety further and formulated the four debts to four groups of people—parents, sentient beings, rulers, and Buddhism—a teaching that became very popular in Chinese Buddhism and spread to other East Asian countries.