YEAR OF NEWS :
Monday, April 25, 2016
The Origin of Bathing the Buddha
Over 2,600 years ago in ancient India, Queen Maya of Kapilavastu gave birth to Prince Siddhartha, who later became Shakyamuni Buddha, under the ashoka tree in Lumbini Garden. The newborn Prince, pointing one hand up at the sky and the other downwards to the earth, said, “In heavens and on the earth, I am the singularly supreme.” This meant that, having gone through three great incalculable eons of practice and about to attain Buddha-hood in the human realm, he was the most superior among all the heavenly and human beings. At that very moment, two streams of pure water came down from heaven to bathe the Prince’s body. Since then, Buddhists have been celebrating the Buddha’s birthday by performing the Buddha Bathing Ritual.
ICM x DDM Interfaith Dialogue
On 13 October 2013, a group of 14 members from the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Heart of Mary (also known as the ICM Sisters) led by General Superior Sr Saveria Jeganathan and General Councilor Sr Tellie Lape from ICM Generalate in Rome, Italy, as well as Superior Sr Teresita Enriquez and Sr Vicky Palanca from Taiwan, visited Dharma Drum Mountain World Education Center and met Venerable Guo Guang, Director-in-chief and Vice Dean of DDM Sangha University, Venerable Guo Kae, Director of the Sangha Education Department and Venerable Guo Jiann, Director of Department of International Relations and Development for an interreligious dialogue.
As part of a commitment to care and educate, Dharma Drum Mountain Social Welfare and Charity Foundation (DDMSWCF) have, for the past 14 years, granted much-needed scholarships to students in underprivileged families. Apart from financial assistance, DDM also organizes field trips and life education, with the aim to uplift the character of humanity and in the hope that it will encourage students to give back to society in the future.
At 10 o’clock in the morning of September 7th, it is the first time for DDM Zhaiming Monastery to hold a staff rejuvenating workshop for employees, volunteers, upholders and followers. Zhaiming Monastery specially invited Dr. Zheng Shi-Yen, a psychologist as well as a Chan practitioner, to give a talk. He illustrated the profound topic “Cultivate the Gentle Power of Life” in a simple way, with five essences; namely responsibility, experience, charity, refinement and faith. He allowed the 200 audience members to understand and experience the subtle wisdom of “Keep Vows, No Complaints.”
Do you remember what you did on the first day at college? For the freshmen of Dharma Drum Buddhist College (DDBC), they will be taught Chan practice to start the first semester. At nine o’clock on the morning of September 3rd, DDBC taught the the new students Chan practice to let them relax their bodies and experience a clear mind prior to knowing the campus and teachers.
DDM has hosted the Buddhist-style joint birthday celebration for the elderly for twenty consecutive years at every branch monastery. The purpose of the event is to promote filial virtue of respecting and loving our parents and the event is usually held around the time of the Double Ninth Festival. This year DDM Anhe Branch Monastery hosted the event on October 10 with over 500 elders and their family members participating. Participation rate was at a record high compared to previous years and the atmosphere was warm and touching.
From October 4th-6th 2013, fourteen students from Long Island University in the United States of America attended at the Dharma Drum Mountain World Center for Buddhist Education in Jinshan District, New Taipei City, for a three-day program on Chan Buddhism.
Those planning to tie the knot in 2014 can exchange their marriage vows before the Buddha at the 20th Buddhist group wedding ceremony to be held at the Dharma Drum Mountain World Center for Buddhist Education on January 11. DDM expects 64 newlyweds-to-be to be married at the joyful and sincere ceremony. Registration is now open but availability is limited. DDM welcomes soon-to-be happy couples over the age of 20 to be married with the blessings of the Three Jewels.
The Great Compassion Water and Land Dharma Service 2013 will begin from 30 November to 7 December.
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From 12 July to 10 August 2013, over 400 students from elementary school through to high school in Sichuan attended the four ‘life education’ camps. DDM Social Welfare and Charity Foundation (DDMSWCF) and DDM Young People Development Department have been conducting these camps since 2009 to educate on ‘Protecting the Spiritual Environment’.
The turnaround in parents’ attitude towards their children’s decision on ordination may be the result of community recognition of the long-standing contributions made by DDM towards society stabilization and community benefits. DDM hosted a pre-ordination event on 18th August at the DDM’s International Banquet Hall, Jinshan, New Taipei City where DDM’s Abbot President, Venerable Guo Dong, met the parents and family members of postulants who will soon be monastics. The event created an environment of warmth and cohesiveness among parents in relation to their children’s decision to be monastic. It was also an opportunity for older monastics to witness a social change where the decision of the younger generation to renounce was recognized and accepted by parents.