One root divides into ten thousand branches;
Ten thousand branches return to the one root.
When the Venerable Master’s ashes were scattered into empty space from the hot-air balloon at the end of forty-nine days of holding memorial services, it seemed that everything was empty. The Master once said,
“You don’t have the slightest idea of what I’m all about.” The state of a Sage cannot be fathomed by ordinary people. Nevertheless,
“The waters of a thousand rivers reflect the moon; the sky is free of clouds for ten thousand miles.” To people who have seen the Master or simply heard his name, the Master’s individualized teachings and compassionate and equal acceptance of all are like the bright moonlight reflected in the waters of their minds. Knowing that we could never completely express the Master’s meritorious virtue, we unfilial disciples have still tried to describe a small fraction of the Master’s virtuous conduct.
Ever since the book In Memory of the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua, Volume One, was published during the memorial services, many elder Sangha members, greatly virtuous ones, and disciples have contributed essays, letters, calligraphy, photographs, and other material, enabling the Buddhist Text Translation Society to compile the second volume without difficulty. We deeply appreciate all these contributions. This second volume includes coverage of the Memorial and Cremation Ceremonies; elegies; letters; the Venerable Master’s calligraphy and instructional talks; photographs of the Master’s sharira; an initial compilation of stories and photos concerning the Master’s work of propagating the Dharma and teaching disciples in America; and many touching memorial essays by disciples. From the moonlight which is reflected in the waters of living beings’ minds by these records of the Master’s life, we can get a small peek at the state in which
“the sky is free of clouds for ten thousand miles.”
The Venerable Master has given us so very much. We hope that with the publication of this volume, we can share what we have received with all living beings, whether or not they have affinities with us. We deeply believe the Master’s vow:
“I vow that all living beings who see my face or even hear my name will bring forth the Bodhi mind and quickly realize the Buddha Way.” Those who see or hear of this volume will certainly benefit from the Master’s unselfish moonlight, which shines universally in the waters of living beings’ minds.
“When the waters of living beings’ minds are pure, the reflection of Bodhi appears.” In teaching disciples and devoting his life to all living beings, the Master did not seek any reward. He hoped only that we would also benefit all living beings and be good to all people.
October 5, 1995