Talk by the Venerable Master on September 11, 1992
All fellow students, fellow cultivators, and those sharing the same vows: People outside say that at Sagely City of Ten Thousand Buddhas are really strict. Actually, the Sagely is a Way-place with no rules at all; it has just begun, and nothing has gotten on track and come to order yet.
Our Buddha Hall isn't even a proper Buddha Hall. It used to be a basketball court, which we turned into a Buddha Hall. So this Buddha Hall is already not in accord with the rules. However, I've wanted to build a proper Buddhist Way-place for a long time. The first time, we applied to construct a three-hundred by two-hundred foot Buddha Hall on the empty lot behind the existing Buddha Hall, which could accommodate ten thousand worshippers, and the government approved it. But for the sake of our long-term plans, we relocated it to the meadow in front of the Dining Hall, and the government approved it again. However, although this site was over thirty acres, it was not large enough to include living quarters as well as the Buddha Hall, so although it was approved, we changed our plan again, and moved it to a ninety-acre wooded site to the east. But this time, because the site was classified as agricultural land, we had to go through many public hearings, in which some people supported it, while certain farmers opposed it. Thus, many years have passed with one delay after another.
This year, while still ill, I met with the Farmer's Association, and as a result of our meeting they no longer oppose us. So now the government may approve our project. If so, we can begin constructing a Buddhist monastery. Not only can all the cultivators move in together, it will also be equipped to hold ordination ceremonies and other events. The place will be ready to use. Only then can the Sagely City of Ten Thousand Buddhas be considered properly operative. Once we build the Wonderful Enlightenment Sagely Monastery, all these buildings over here can be used for the university, high school, and elementary school.