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Bodhi Garden

我的學佛因緣
WHY I COME TO STUDY BUDDHISM

姚文萱 Yao Wen-hsuan

由於向來從事科學研究,因此凡事講求證據,眼見為信、無神論及人本主義一直是我生活的中心思想,平時則以儒家學說作為檢討反省的依據。以前我想宗教行為只是提供人們心靈上的寄託,卻何曾悟及宗教之一的佛教,竟會是唯一能夠解決宇宙人生奧秘的途徑。

 一九九一年初,我正致力於生命科學的研究--從物理學的觀念出發,去了解細胞的生命現象及其特質。此時受到二位佛友的引領,後經由師父宣化上人的開示,我開始以邏輯推理及自身體驗,對宇宙、人生作廣泛深入的研究,進而為佛教無限殊勝的領域所吸引。我發現到宇宙間有許多遠超過科學範疇所能解釋的事與理,研讀《楞嚴經》,才知道原來佛理是如此地嚴密不可破,其內涵的深遠高廣,豈是今日科學僅以物質、能量看世界所能比擬。

 佛教中法門無量,到目前為止,自己似乎以參禪、讀經、修習止觀較為應機。我幸得善知識的導引,以師父的開示錄為啟蒙,《楞嚴經》為入門,又得地利之便,可從柏克萊加大的東亞圖書館借閱佛教典籍,此外也參加萬佛聖城的禪七、觀音七,以體驗各種不同的法門,其中的收穫是既豐富又不可言喻的。

(編按:姚文萱居士現任金山聖寺育良小學義務校長)

Because I have always been engaged in scientific  research, I need to see facts in every case, and I  believe only what I witness with my own eyes.  Atheism and humanism have been main  philosophies in life, but usually I would base myself  on Confucianism for my inner reflections. Religious  activities, to me, were simply a reliance for people's  spirits. And I was not aware that Buddhism, one of  the world's religions, happened to be the only path  to actually open up the wonders of life in the  universe.

In the beginning of 1991, I was focusing on  research in the life-sciences -- and I based myself on  concepts in physics to understand the phenomenum  and nature of the life of cells. Having received the guidance of two fellow cultivators and later on, the instructions of the Ven. Master Hsuan Hua, I began  to undergo extensive and deep investigations into  the universe and into life, using logical reasoning  and my own experiences, and I was greatly  fascinated by the limitless range of Buddhism. I  found out there are many things and principles in  the universe which are far beyond the scope of science. After I investigated the Shurangama  Sutra, I realized Buddhism is so precise and  accurate that it can't be refuted. The content of Buddhism is deep and  vast. How could  science be compared  with Buddhism, since science limits its scope to aspects of matter and  energy?

There are immeasurable Dharma doors in the  Buddha's teachings. Up to now, it seems more  appropriate for me to practice Chan meditation, to  recite the Sutras, and to practice "contemplation &  stopping." I am so fortunate to have the guidance of  a Good and Wise Advisor, and to begin with the  instructional talks of the Ven. Master and to start my study of Buddhism with the Shurangama Sutra. Moreover, because of the advantage of the location, I  am able to borrow Buddhist books from the East  Asian Library at U. C. Berkeley. And I took part in  Chan Sessions, and Gwan Yin Bodhisattva  Recitation Sessions at the Sagely City of Ten  Thousand Buddhas. I encountered many different  practices, and my achievements were rich and  inexpressably fine.

(Editor's note:Layperson Yau Wen-hsuan is currently the  Honory Principle of the volunteer teachers at Instilling  Goodness Elementary School at Gold Mountain Sagely Monastery.)

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