Chin Feng Shi is among the first group of novices to enter the monastic life under the Sangha's sanction since the Venerable Master passed into stillness. A native of Fujian Province, China, he comes from a family of scholars and is fluent in both Chinese and English.
He came to the United States in 1989 to attend college. In 1993, he came to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas preparing to enter the monastic life. At the time, the Venerable Master did not definitively give his permission, so he waited—for four years. By then, the Master had already entered Nirvana and he had gone through many ordeals.
Why were there setbacks? Well, it turns out that Chin Feng Shi was a fan of qigong and admired the Taoist style of understanding both esoteric and medicinal arts. At that time his understanding of Buddhism was not deep and his faith was not strong. The Master saw that the conditions were not yet ripe, and so did not grant his wish. However, it was his interest in non-Buddhist teachings that brought him to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, which he calls, "a miniature paradise on earth."
At the City he felt that the Venerable Master was suffering sickness on his behalf and protecting him from danger. It was truly an inconceivable state. Chin Feng Shi gradually became aware of the Master's magnificent spirit of "rescuing everyone with great compassion, sparing neither blood nor sweat, and never pausing to rest." Many times he was moved to tears while reciting the "Chapter on Universal Worthy's Conduct and Vows." He could feel the warmth of the Master's kind concern, and his resolve to become a monk increased day by day.
In hopes of repaying the Master's kindness, Chin Feng Shi devoted himself to teaching in the Boys School during the past four years, often spending the night at the school. Translating articles for this journal, he sat in lotus posture all day long , yet he did not find it hard.
His wish fulfilled, Chin Feng Shi now lives the busy yet fulfilling life of a novice monk. The sound of his wake-up boards, the drum and the bell seem to be calling living beings to wake up from their dreams and resolve to seek Bodhi. A verse says:
Personally treading the holy ground, he recognized a precious pearl.
Running in circles on twisted paths, he found a way out of confusion.
To repay his Teacher's kindness, he's ready to renounce his life.
He vows to turn the Dharma wheel to save the suffering multitudes.