A Pure Land of Pure Friendship: Governor-General of the Solomon Islands Visits Dharma Drum Mountain

At 10:30 a.m. on May 21, Governor General of the Solomon Islands, H.E. Sir Frank Ofagioro Kabui, together with his wife and other guests, visited Dharma Drum Mountain World Center for Buddhist Education, accompanied by Victor Te-Sun Yu, Taiwan’s ambassador to the Solomon Islands, and his wife. Ven. Hui Min, DDM’s chief monk, Ven. Guo Hui, DDM’s vice abbot president, and Ven. Guo Guang, DDM’s director-in-chief, among other DDM Sangha members, jointly welcomed the visiting guests. They paid a visit to the Grand Buddha Hall and the Founding History Memorial Hall, and over tea they talked about the friendship between the people in Taiwan and the Solomon Islands, in an amicable, joyful, and warm atmosphere.

Ven. Hui Min conveyed the greetings from DDM’s abbot president Ven. Guo Dong, who is currently on a trip overseas to share the Dharma, and also introduced the ideals, educational philosophy, and practices of building a pure land on earth as advocated by DDM. In addition, he shared a news article, which he has kept for seven years, about Stanley, chief of a remote tribe in the Solomon Islands, calling his tribe to donate money to the victims in Taiwan affected by Typhoon Morakot in 2009, as an act to repay kindness of Taiwan for its continued aid to the Solomon Islands.

Ven. Hui Min asked ambassador Yu to present chief Stanley a gratitude letter, Taiwan-made tea, and a “happy harmony ball” made of recycled materials, which is fun and safe to play with, easy to make, and suitable for tribal games. During lunch, the Govern General kept praising the devoted volunteers and the delicious vegetarian meals. He also hopes that people in the world can all love and help each, eliminate killing, and make an effort to transform the world into a pure land.

According to ambassador Yu, over 95 percent of the population in Solomon Islands is Christian, and its economy is still developing. Religion plays an important role in their society, as local government policies are often made known to the public through the church. He appreciates DDM’s social education efforts by promoting the idea of Protecting the Spiritual Environment to purify people’s minds, and has learned more about the vigorous interaction between Buddhism and people in society. The guests were glad to have made this first visit as a delightful and inspirational experience.

Translated by Frances Liu (劉珮如) and edited by Chiacheng Chang (張家誠)

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