The Tripitaka, the Buddhist Canon, is composed of three main bodies of literature: sutras, vinaya, and shastras. The sutras are all the teachings spoken by Sakyamuni Buddha. The vinaya are the precepts and rules of deportment that evolved over the years of the Buddha's instruction. The shastras are treatises set down by Bodhisattvas, Patriarchs, sages and saints over the 3000 years since the Buddha's nirvana. It is this body of holy literature in its three aspects that the Buddhist Text Translation Society has engaged in translating into English and other Western languages.
It is also this massive collection of literature that Dharma Master Heng Ch'ing has resolved to read in its entirety. As a part of her daily practice, she delves into the Tripitaka. As a result, her knowledge of Buddhist doctrine is firmly grounded and deep and extensive in its scope.
In order to most effectively embody these profound doctrines in actual practice, Bhiksuni Heng Ch'ing chose to leave the home-life and was fully ordained at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas in the 1976 Precept Platform.
In addition to her daily study of the Tripitaka, Dharma Master Heng Ch'ing actively engages in the propagation of the Dharma, serving in many capacities. She is a founding member of the Board of Trustees of Dharma Realm Buddhist University and contributes to the Buddhist Text Translation Society as a reviewer of translations.
In 1977 Dharma Master Heng Ch'ing became Manager of Dharma Realm Buddhist University. During that year she was also appointed a Professor of Buddhist Studies.
Bhiksuni Heng Ch'ing follows the traditional practice of taking only one meal a day at noon. She has also vowed to never let her ribs touch the mat, so even at night she sits in meditation posture. During a recent session at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, she investigated the traditional practice of going into total seclusion. During this period she remained alone in a designated area, free from the usual daily matters and interactions, and singlemindedly studied and practiced. She says there are various kinds of seclusions ranging from total isolation to occasional contact with one or two people to a regularly scheduled lecture period during which people are invited to hear instruction on the Dharma. The usual period for the practice of seclusion is three years minimum.
In July of this year Dharma Master Heng Ch'ing accepted responsibilities at Gold Wheel Temple, the Los Angeles branch of the Sino-American Buddhist Association, for a period of time. Besides teaching a regular class in Buddhist English, she gives informal instruction in basic Buddhist doctrine and helps preside at Dharma Assemblies, repentances, and daily ceremonies.
When in residence at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, Dharma Master Heng Ch'ing teaches advanced Chinese at Dharma Realm Buddhist University and is active as Editor of the monthly journal Vajra Bodhi Sea.
BUDDHIST TEXT TRANSLATION
The Dharma Flower Sutra, V.I: Introduction, 66 pp. $3.95.
V II: Chapter 1, Introduction, 357 pp. $7.95
The Amitabha Sutra, 204 pp. $8.00
The Vajra Sutra, 192 pp. $8.00
The Dharani Sutra, 352 pp. $12.00
The Surangama Sutra, V I, 248 pp. $8.50
The Earth Store Bodhisattva Sutra, 23500 $9.00 soft cover, $16.00 hard bound.
The Sixth Patriarch’s Sutra, 380 pp. $10 soft cover, $15.00 hard bound.
The Sutra in Forty-two Sections, 94 pp. $4.00
The Sramanera Vinaya, 112 pp. $5.00
Buddha Root Farm, 72 pp. $4.00
Pure Land and Ch’an Dharma Talks, 72 pp. $4.00
Listen to Yourself; Think Everything Over, 153 pp. $7.00
Three Steps, One Bow, 156 pp. $5.95
Celebrisi’s Journey, 178 pp. $4.00
With One Heart Bowing to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, V I, 173 pp. $6.00