Seek Tranquility of the Mind: DDM Holds Its First Chan Meditation Camp for High School Students
The first Chan meditation camp for high school students organized by the Dharma Drum Young Buddhist Society (DDYBS) was held at DDM’s Xinxing Monastery in Taitung. About 100 students attended the camp to experience a different summer vacation.
Venerable Chang Yuan, the chief facilitator, said that the camp specifically designed the “class of mind”, which allowed the Venerables to inspire students by sharing their own life experiences. Venerable Chang Yuan also shared his own schooling experience. One significant and life changing incident occurred during his student days when he was a sophomore at the University. One day while playing pool in the billiard room with his friend, he saw a poster of DDM’s Chan Meditation Camp for college students. On the poster, the late Venerable Master Sheng Yen held up a leaf that reflected tranquility and peace of mind, which deeply resonated with him. He immediately signed up for the DDYBS’s Chan Meditation Camp and has never looked back since. He encouraged the students to explore the wonders of developing a tranquil mind which will help greatly in then choosing a right way to live their lives in the future.
One of the attendees, Lin Zi-Chen mentioned that the camp gave him a different perspective of what was important in daily life. The camp opened up different new experiences. One very special realization he discovered happened on the very first day: on the first day in the camp, every attendee was told to hand in their cell phones which subsequently let Lin have more time to actually talk face-to-face with other attendees around him. The absence of the distractions of the cell phone gave him the opportunity to look within himself and settle his mind. Afterwards, he realized that though electronic products which we rely on bring many conveniences to life, they actually increase the distance between people and human interaction between people is lost.
Attendees were taught various methods in the practice of Chan Meditation and Venerable Guo Zheng, the director of Xinxing Monastery specially taught them the practice of listening to the sound of the sea, and how to achieve calmness and peace of mind by listening to the sound of the tide.
Overall, most of the attendees felt that the Chan Meditation Camp was a highly successful one as it brought unforgettable experiences and invaluable lessons to them.
(Translated by Tom Hsieh/ Edited by DDM Australia Editing Team)