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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.


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【 A Tale of Two Futures - Planetary Realism in the Time of Climate Change 】 By Tim Dai

Introduction

Venerable Chang Ji just delivered an amazing talk at Dharma Drum Vancouver Center, and the talk was closely related to each one of us. It’s on Global Climate Change of our common home - earth. As you may already know, in December 2015 there was an important international conference took place in Pairs regarding Climate Change – COP21. Venerable Chang Ji, representing DDMBA US, attended the full conference which lasted for almost 12 days, and we were very lucky to have her sharing with us what she learned. Unfortunately, some people weren’t able to attend her talk. Therefore, here is my report on her talk and hopefully it can give you a little taste of her talk and this important topic
To further experience Buddhist culture, Republic of Guatemala’s Vice President, Excmo. Sr. Juan Alfonso Fuentes Soria, his wife, daughter, confidential secretary, and Guatemala’s Minister of Labor visited Dharma Drum Mountain World Center for Buddhist Education at 10am on December 27, 2015. He was accompanied by Larry R. L. Tseng, Taiwan Director-General of Protocol Department of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and other officials. Ven. Gong Dong (果東法師), DDM’s abbot president, together with Ven. Chang Yuan (常遠法師), Ven. Guo Gao (果高法師), Ven. Guo Yue (果悅法師), Ven. Guo Shu (果樞法師) cordially welcomed the group of VIPs, and gave them a guided tour of the Buddha Hall to pay respect to the Buddha, the Founding History Memorial Hall, and the Wish-Fulfilling Guanyin Hall. Finally, the guests were presented the Great Compassion Water and the spiritual prescription slips as blessings.
Nearly ten thousand devotees attended the ritual of Sending off the Sages toward the end of Dharma Drum Mountain Great Compassion Water and Land Dharma Service, in the afternoon of December 5, 2015. For the ritual, all the monastics and lay Buddhists sent off the four kinds of sages and six groups of ordinary beings in the ten spiritual realms with utmost gratitude and joyful mind by sincerely chanting the Buddha’s name, marking the completion of the Service.

In the Dharma ceremony, abbot president, Ven. Guo Dong (果東)emphasized that having a thankful heart is in itself Protecting the Spiritual Environment. The participants all vowed to learn the Dharma, support Buddhism, and spread the Buddha’s teaching, making an effort to build a pure land on Earth.
The 6th International Conference on Contemporary Buddhism and the Thought of Master Sheng Yen will be held at the GIS National Taiwan University Convention Center from Friday to Sunday, July 1 to 3, 2016. The title of the conference is "Chinese Buddhism and Master Sheng Yen in the Contexts of Modernity and the Buddhist Historical Imagination". Sheng Yen Education Foundation, sponsor of the event, indicates that the biannual international conference aims to stimulate religious dialogues in the effort to build a pure land on earth, and the number of papers presented as well as the amount of audience for each conference have gradually increased since its inception in 2006.
Sharing the same faith to realize the compassionate vow, over 10 thousand Dharma Drum Mountain’s followers from around the world gathered at the DDM World Center for Buddhist Education at 10 am on November 1 to pray for blessings for the suffering, in a joint meditation and by performing a Dharma service, in which they recited the name of and prayed to Guanyin Bodhisattva, aspiring to emulate and model the spirit of the Bodhisattva. With all participants rejoicing at the reunion in a heartwarming atmosphere, this is the second global followers assembly since DDM’s Global Members Meeting 16 years ago, which launched the Fivefold Spiritual Renaissance campaign.
Dharma Drum Mountain’s Abbot President Ven. Guo Dong took a trip to Dharma Drum Mountain Hong Kong from October 15 to 19, where he talked on Buddhist compassion and wisdom in a public lecture and a refuge ceremony, bringing joy and serenity of the Dharma to local followers. The venerable also expressed his gratitude and blessing to local supporters for their efforts in receiving devotees and helping with the operations and plans of the practice center.
What is life? Who am I? How do people get real ease of mind? Have you ever been confused about the scenery in front of you while standing on the corner of your life? If so, we suggest you temporarily put aside life disturbances and bring simple belongings to experience an 11-day monastic retreat. With monastic advisors leading and companionship with other students from different places looking for life answers, you can together embrace the monastic precepts while walking, standing, sitting and lying down in a peaceful and quiet environment to feel an awakening and experience a transcendence of life.
With today’s changing tides in society, where does your mind go and follow? Can you be brave enough to pursue your own values, stirring up your own tide of self-assurance? Dharma Drum for Young People cordially invites 300 young people of their own “mind tides” throughout the globe to join a rally on October 31 and November 1, to pray for blessings by chanting the Heart Sutra, thereby finding the power to calm the body-mind amidst the chaos and confusion of modern life.
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Featuring a campus life helping the student cultivate their minds and learn to take care of their own and other people’s physical and mental well-being, Dharma Drum Institute of Liberal Arts (DILA) has issued admission guidelines regarding its graduate school programs for the Discipline of Humanities and Social Sciences and the Department of Buddhist Studies for Year 2016, which will start receiving application respectively from October 15 and 30. As a recruitment effort, DILA held a Humanities and Social Sciences Study Experience camp on October 3 and 4, with over 70 people signing up to experience campus life as a freshman.
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