Ven. Master's Talk at the International Translation Institute on May 1, 1993
We should all put our minds and efforts together to do education, to reform the world's education. Nowadays, the world's education has been blown by an evil wind. This evil wind has blown our youth astray. We must do something quickly, to save this world and to save education. It is not just the United States. If it were just the States, the Americans do not need us to reform their education. They are smart and wise enough. They want to reform by themselves. Why do I say this? Because I met someone from the Department of Education last year. I told him about this and he said there was still hope for the education in the States. I told him that the education in the States was bankrupt already, and I asked him if he dared to say so. He pondered for a while and only uttered a few obscure Ahs and Ehms, not daring to give a direct reply. He did not dare say so. He said there's still hope. If that is the case, you can take your time. If you do not begin from the basics, if you do not begin from problem of men and women, what is the use? Now, the Americans also know about this. After some discussions, professors and students are prohibited to have sexual relationship. Before, if you did not sleep with them, you could not graduate. What kind of mess was that?
Do our schools still raise the flag every morning or not? (Answer: yes, we do.) Raising the national flag in the morning shows respect for the nation's system. In performing the ceremony you should not just raise the flag, you should also give a ten-minute lecture. That would be ideal. Everyone (faculty members) should take turns lecturing. Also, in our schools, boys and girls must both wear uniforms. American schools do not require uniforms. They have nothing at all, like gangsters. We must try again and again to do a good job and not be sloppy. We must have good schools. Weird clothing should not be allowed in school; we must straighten out the discipline in the schools. Our schools should not like other schools, in which girls wear sexy clothes to attract boys. Because we cannot allow that, we have separate schools. Let me tell you, although I am a left-home person, education has been my lifelong ambition. If any of you have faith in me, you should also devote yourself to education. We want to reform the schools, but not blindly. I set up volunteer schools when I was eighteen, and taught over thirty people by myself. Education is the foundation for being a person. It is the foundation for the world; and it is the true national defense. If you do not do a good job in education, national defense will fail as well.
Education is the foundation for a nation. The United States is in a mess now because the education is no good--it exists in name only. We should bring forth our strength for the sake of education. It is not easy to reform education. Even here, the International Translation Institute needs to be reformed as well. The work cannot just by done by a few left-home people. Laypeople should also join in and help. Take a little time each day to help the translation work, even an hour a day is fine. This work should not be monopolized by left-home people, because the progress is too slow. For two years, not even the Sutra in Forty-Two Sections has being translated. How pitiful! This is not due to lack of manpower. It is because you do not know how to do it. The laypeople cannot help when they come here since left-home people have been holding tightly onto this work. We must open up, widely collect other people's thoughts and wisdom, and thus gain greater benefit. There is no difference between left-home people and laypeople; in working, everyone is the same.
We must also promote volunteer education here. It would be ideal if we could make it a trend. We need to take care the elderly. In the Sagely City we should get all the elderly together and set up an individual file for each older person with a picture and a small autobiography.
The files will be the permanent record of the City's history. In addition to older people, the middle-aged people, left-home people, laypeople and children should all have files as well. We must have something to show the world. We can not live day and night in a disorderly fashion.