On March 31, 1993, on the occasion of the completion of the Buddha Hall at Long Beach Sagely Monastery, the Venerable Master asked a Dharma-protecting layperson from Los Angeles, Gwo-Syang Woo, to tell everyone the background of the temples of Dharma Realm Buddhist Association in Los Angeles--Gold Wheel Sagely Monastery and Long Beach Sagely Monastery. Then the Venerable Master added:
That is the history of Long Beach Sagely Monastery, which all of you should know. I remember the history and background of every one of our temples very well. Is everyone clear about the background of the Long Beach Sagely Monastery?
In the future, I will treat all the temples as real estate. We will sell those properties which we do not need, and the remaining properties will become Buddhist temples in the West forever. No one should ever sell those properties. I will set up the rules and by-laws to ensure this. You who are my disciples should know that your teacher is poor, and you ought to follow me in poverty, and not have any money either. Ah! Once you have money, the troubles come and you cannot cultivate. Once you have wealth, you will want to eat, drink and be merry - and you will not stop at anything. That is not like from my practice of using the same napkin for many days. I do not think a single one of my disciples does that. Probably they are all from free countries and know very little about being thrifty. For that reason, I am not going to leave too much money for them. I myself do not wish to have a lot of money either--do you all understand me?
There is one more thing I may tell you. Ever since I left the home-life, I have regarded the translation the Sutras as important, and I have also emphasized the importance of education. Therefore, in all of these years, I have been saving up the donations that people made, and I saved up $250,000. I was planning to use it as scholarships for left-home people and laypeople to study. I was willing to give a scholarship to anyone who would study, whether he was a left-home person or a layperson. Although the money was not much, it could still support several people to pursue their studies, and that's what we used it for. So now there are both left-home people and laypeople working on their Ph.D.'s, Bachelor's, and Master's degrees. For example, you all were not aware that Gwo Ting, Gwo Jen and some laypeople are studying under the aid of this scholarship fund. I will also tell you now that I have been very thrifty with your donations. Over the past thirty years, I have saved up this much money and now it is providing some people with an opportunity to study. This is how I have spent the money. Today, although not that many people are here, I have told everyone about this; otherwise you would not know how I have used this money.
Furthermore, there was a person named Gwo Ming. The way he talked, his voice, his appearance and his mannerisms were all pretty similar to mine, and also his air of being old beyond his years. Ah! When he spoke, what he said was both eloquent and sophisticated. What a shame he passed away so soon! He died too early. I have also allocated fifty thousand dollars as a scholarship in memory of him. That sum of money can also be used to provide laypeople and left-home people with a chance to study. This has been my lifelong vow!