Earth Store Bodhisattva
Earth Store Bodhisattva
Over a hundred and fifty people joined in the week-long recitation session honoring Earth Store Bodhisattva, the Mahasattva of Great Vows. "As long as the hells are not empty, I won't become a Buddha. Until all beings have left suffering, I won't accomplish the Supreme Way," is the magnitude of his mighty vows.
The schedule for the intensive week of cultivation included:
4:00 A.M. Morning recitation
5:00-7:30 A.M. Meditation (and breakfast)
7:30-8:00 A.M. Ceremonies and recitation of Earth Store Bodhisattva's name.
8:00-10:15 A.M. Lectures on the Brahma Net Sutra by the Elder Master Hui Seng.
10:15-11:45 High Meal Offering and noon meal.
11:45-12:00 Transference of Merit before the Long Life Plaques.
12:30-1:15 P.M. ceremonies and recitation of Earth Store Bodhisattva's name.
1:15-2:30 P.M. Lectures on the Shurangama Mantra by Venerable Master Hua
2:30-2:50 P.M. Transference of Merit before the Ancestral Memorial Plaques
Recitation of Earth Store Bodhisattva's name
and silent meditation
6:30-7:15 P.M. Evening Recitation
7:15-9:00 P.M. Evening Shurangama Mantra 1ecture
9:00-9:40 P.M. Great Transference of Merit.
10:00 P.M. Lights Out.
Disciples and friends of the Buddha from Malaysia, Canada, Oregon, Idaho, and many parts of California participated in the week's events, which also included a Liberating Life Ceremony during which turtles and frogs, destined for soup and frying pan, were given the Three Refuges by Elder Master Hui Seng and then set free in Mendocino Lake to live out their natural lives.
After the Brahma Net Sutra lecture series ended, the Elder Master Hui consented to deliver morning instruction to participants in the Earth Store Session, held in the Kuan Yin Hall of Ten Thousand Buddhas.
Venerable Master Hua often reserved the afternoon lecture period for lessons in matching couplets, a Dharma door which students of all nationalities joined in with bravado.
A special atmosphere of both gentleness and power grew as the week progressed and the unity of the group solidified. Always, cultivators could view Dharma Masters Heng Sure and Heng Ch'au in their quiet work of bowing once every three steps, which has not ceased since May 7, 1977. Of further inspiration were several participants of the session who chose (unbeknownst to one another) to fast for the period of the session, dedicating the merit as a prayer for peace on the earth.