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News from the Dharma Realm

A Thousand People Attend the Eighth Anniversary
of the Venerable Master Hua’s Nirvana

雙合 文與譯 by Shwang He

今年六月六、七日兩天,路易斯安那州紐奧良金法寺、洛杉磯金輪寺、舊金山金山寺、西沙加緬度法界聖城等法總分支道場的四眾弟子雲集而來,陸續抵達萬佛城參加六月八日星期天的紀念大典。同時數百名越南裔信眾租乘十多輛大巴士,在明照法師、恆達師、恆顯師和恆量師的帶領下也遠道趕來參加。1980年代初, 宣公上人在萬佛城設置難民營,幫助逃離越南的難民渡過難關,在美國安身立命。如今上人雖已入涅槃,他們仍然深念其恩澤,紛紛前來感懷禮敬。


五年未曾回到萬佛聖城的恆達法師由印地安那州回來。他勉勵大眾應該效法 上人禮敬虛老的精神,遵守六大宗旨,不論出家在家眾,各盡本份各盡其責,做一個好修行人。





On July 6-7, the fourfold assembly of disciples came from all directions, including Gold Dharma Monastery in New Orleans, Long Beach Monastery and Gold Wheel Monastery in Los Angeles, Gold Mountain Monastery in San Francisco, and the City of the Dharma Realm in Sacramento, to attend the Anniversary Ceremony on June 8th. Moreover, busloads of Vietnamese Buddhists--many more than in the past--came from far away with Dharma Masters Ming Jau, Heng Da, Heng Syan and Heng Lyang. In the early 1980’s, the Venerable Master established the Buddhist Refugee Council at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas, to help the Vietnamese have a comfortable stay in the U.S. during that difficult time. Even after the Venerable Master’s nirvana, they came to show their gratitude and respect for his great kindness.

On the evening of the 7th, Dharma Master Ming Jau was invited to speak Dharma. His topic was how to get rid of the three poisons of greed, hatred and delusion. He pointed out that delusion is the origin of ignorance. Since delusion causes us to commit various offenses, we must eradicate it first. Its coarse attributes are easy to eradicate, but its subtle attributes are hard to see and remove. If we wish to leave the sea of suffering in this Saha world, then we should closely guard the six sense faculties and not harbor any of the three poisons at any time.

Coming back from Indiana to visit CTTB after a five-year absence, Dharma Master Heng Da urged the assembly to follow the Venerable Master’s example in his reverence towards the Noble Elder Hsu. We should follow the Six Great Guidelines. Whether monastic or lay Buddhists, each of us should try our best to fulfill our responsibilities and be a good cultivator.

On June 8th, the ceremony for commemorating the Venerable Master’s nirvana began at 8:00 a.m. with bowing to the Venerable Master, circumambulating the sharira stupa, and the passing of offerings by a thousand people. At lunch, Dharma Master Heng Syan, the first speaker, spoke of how the Venerable Master taught us to reflect upon ourselves, not to look outside, at other people or at states. We should look at ourselves so we correct ourselves. That is the ultimate purpose of cultivation. The Venerable Master often taught us to be such that: “The eyes see forms, but inside there is nothing. The ears hear sounds, but the mind does not know.”

Next, Dharma Master Heng Sure spoke about how Buddhism has been in America for only thirty years and many people still don’t understand the Buddhadharma. “One of the places people really don’t get it is everyone assumes Buddhists are very still and quiet. Well, if we follow the example of the Venerable Master, we discover Buddhists are not only quiet but also active. There are four particular legacies we are still working on, because the Master’s spirit is still manifesting in motion. One obviously is to establish the Sangha. When the Sangha comes from the ground where the Dharma has been taught, you’ve got a future. The second legacy is to translate the Buddhist canon. The Master himself spoke the Dharma without exception, every night of his existence in America for thirty-some years, and his disciples are still working on translating those lectures into various languages. The next legacy is education—teaching young people to bring out their talents, training people towards their potential. Wherever there is a Way-place, there is a classroom. And the last one is interfaith—Buddhism is the new kid on the block in the religious texture. We can’t expect others to believe what Buddhists understand, so it’s our job to understand the traditions already rooted in this soil in this time and learn and make sense of those and connect the hospitable, the opening, the welcoming—learn, listen and then share. So the Venerable Master made that a priority to introduce the principles of the Dharma into mainstream, intellectual discourse in this country. That’s why we have elementary, middle school, high school, a university, and the Institute for World Religions. Those are the Venerable Master’s four legacies, where in stillness and in motion, we carry out the Buddha’s work. Within these four legacies, where do I fit? That’s a question I’d like to ask everybody to contemplate.”

Over a thousand people attended the 8th Anniversary of the Venerable Master’s Nirvana. Everyone felt a sense of gratitude for the Master’s teaching. This was an opportunity for the Master’s monastic and lay disciples to encourage one another to carry on his spirit in propagating the Dharma. May everyone work hard to perpetuate the Proper Dharma forever!



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