The Abbot President Attended the Graduation Ceremony of the Merit Field Program in Fremont

The graduation ceremony for the second cohort of the Merit Field Program was held at DDMBA Chan Meditation Center in Fremont, San Francisco on November 8, 2014. This ceremony was attended by Ven. Guo Dong, the Abbot President of DDM, Ven. Guo Xing, the Abbot of Chan Meditation Center as well as about 100 devotees.

The Abbot President gave his blessing to the 70 graduates of the Merit Field Program and encouraged them to cultivate both wisdom and blessings. He indicated that both good times and adversities serve as catalysts for our growth. Our blessing can be maintained as long as we cherish and cultivate it in good times; on the other hand, wisdom could be cultivated through learning from harsh and difficult situations. For example, the late Venerable Master Sheng Yen had always employed compassion and wisdom to transform hardships into lessons for progress in his spiritual cultivation.

In addition, the Abbot President also advised the audience to “develop their Buddha-nature, cultivate mindfulness, purify their minds, actions and habits, face the troubles of ignorance repentantly as well as follow the path shown by the Guanyin Bodhisattva”; having piece of mind is a great achievement and dedication to the practice is cultivation of wisdom; help all sentient beings to be freed from suffering and attain peace with Four Inducements and Six Paramitas. Finally, he urged everyone to be less doubtful but more diligent, less competitive but more compassionate, less misgivings but more respectful and understanding as well as less frustrated but more insightful.

More than one hundred devotees with their descendants attended the tea party themed “Meet the Abbot President” at 2:00 p.m. on November 9. In addition, there was also a chanting session to recite the “Great Compassion Mantra” as well as the name of Guanyin Bodhisattva. Thereafter, a video featuring the construction history of the new building was shown. The Abbot President also advised the devotees to cultivate their compassion and wisdom at all times and to be mindful whenever their mind is affected by external environment.

This visit by the Abbot President gave the volunteers in the center a lot of encouragement; these volunteers indicated that they do not consider their volunteer work as a chore but as a learning process to dedicate themselves to the practice of the Dharma.

This Chan Meditation Center has been organizing meditation retreats, Dharma services, seminars and other related activities for the past ten years and will continue to do so; it is hoped that those who are busy and desire to obtain momentary peace would seek refuge at this center and consider this their “pure land”.

(Translated by Tom Hsieh/Edited by Leefah)

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