Abbot President attends the celebration for the return of Akshobhya’s stolen head in Shandong
On 21 December, the Abbot President, Venerable Guo Dong attended the celebration of the tenth anniversary of the return of the head of the Akshobhya Buddha Statute at Shengtung Monastery in the Shandong Province in mainland China.
The Abbot President also participated in the Prayer Ritual with Shengtung’s Abbot Venerable Jeikung and other local officials in charge of religious affairs.
DDM’s Abbot President first offered his warmest gratitude to Venerable Jeikung for the invitation stating that DDM is grateful for this special opportunity that allows the DDM Sangha to network with Dharma friends around the world and plant the Dharma seed in everyone’s mind.
The Abbot President also quoted the late Venerable Master Sheng Yen’s words that “the Akshobhya Buddha statue has been worshiped at the Shengtung Monastery for over 1,400 years. This statue is valuable both in history and culture, and embraces abundant meaning in religion”.
Venerable Jeikung said that he sincerely acknowledges the great compassion and wisdom that Master Sheng Yen had ten years ago by returning the head of the Akshobhya Buddha statue to the Monastery. The head of the statue was removed by bandits of historical relics for greedy interests. He said that he had vowed to preserve and promote the Dharma and not to fail Master Sheng Yen’s and Shengtung’s respected masters’ expectations.
Akshobhya appears in the "Scripture of the Buddha-land of Akshobhya". According to the scripture, a monk wished to practice the Dharma in the eastern world of delight, and made a vow to think of no anger or malice towards any being until enlightenment has been achieved. He duly proved "immovable" and when he succeeded, he became the Akshobhya Buddha.
(translated by Jin Yang/edited by DDM Australia Editing Team)