Upasaka Chang Guoguan came from the Ningpo region of Zheijiang Province. He arrived in Taiwan in 1949 and was one of the original group of cultivators who founded the Dharma Realm Buddhist Distribution Society of Taipei during the early days. His childhood coincided with the war against the Japanese, so life back then was very difficult. Oftentimes, the meals consisted of only rice seasoned with salt. Needless to say, there was no opportunity for education. In 1982, because of illness, he resolved to participate in the publishing and circulation of the Venerable Master's Dharma lecturers. He also joined the multitudes in making Buddhist pilgrimages, bowing to the ground every three steps, undaunted by harsh road conditions. Finally, they received the Venerable Master's compassionate consent to found the Dharma Realm Buddhist Books Distribution Society. In 1981 when the Venerable Master returned to Taiwan, he took refuge with the Venerable Master and and was given the Dharma name, Guoguan (fruit of contemplation).
In 1985, he visited the sagely city for the first time. his wife who later became the sagely City's kitchen manager, Bhikshuni Heng Ran shi, had left the home life. After returning to Taiwan, he felt that his mind was more clear and his memory had improved. Thus this gourmet chef converted to cooking vegetarian cuisine. He was once fortunate enough to prepare meals for the Venerable Master, and he knows that the Venerable Master preferred simple, unrefined fare such as potatoes, carrots, yam, and cabbage.
He says, "My body has already deteriorated entirely, and I also have emphysema. I should have been gone long ago, but I was only slightly injured in severe accidents such as a car crash and a fall from a tall tree, The Venerable Master must have been watching over me. Being safe and sound is proof of a response, right?" He always abides by the personal guideline that one should never do anything against one's good conscience. Currently he is still active in volunteer work at the Dharma Realm Buddhist Books Distribution Society. His only regret is that he has not seen some of his old fellow cultivators for a long time.