Bathing the Buddha on Mother’s Day: Fun Walking Meditation at DDM

Dharma Drum Mountain declared the Mother’s Day, which is designated as the Bathing-the-Buddha Festival in Taiwan, as the Action Day to encourage the practice of protecting the spiritual environment and showing gratitude. At 8 a.m. on May 14, at the MRT Zhongxiao-Fuxing and Xiangshan stations, people and volunteers joined together and kicked off their “urban walking meditation.” Participants had a fun day experiencing moments of stillness in the “Protecting the Spiritual Environment: Stop, Relax, and Enjoy” event, by fine-tuning their inner spiritual clocks through Chan practice.

Stroke the bell of happiness, praying for the well-being for people and the world

Ven. Guo Dong, abbot president of DDM, Ko Wen-je, mayor of Taipei City, Lan Shi-cong, director of the Civil Affairs Bureau of Taipei City, Lin Guo-zhang, general director of National Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall, as well as the SRE family representatives, all performed the Bathing the Buddha ritual, to show their sincere gratitude to the kindness of the Buddha, their parents, all sentient beings, and the caring Mother Earth. They also stroke the bell of happiness, praying for the well-being for people and the world.

The abbot president also shared his 12 personal practices

The abbot president also shared his 12 personal practices as follows:
The practice of bathing the Buddha in the spirit of DDM style of Chan teaching;
The practice of returning to the original intention of the Buddha;
The practice of purifying the mind by washing off mundane defilements;
The practice of protecting the spiritual environment;
The practice of the Dharma whether in walking, standing, sitting, or lying down;
The practice of cultivating a healthy body and mind;
The practice of calmness through awareness and relaxation;
The practice of joyfulness by appreciating the Three Virtues and Six Tastes of foods;
The practice of sharing the Dharma by universally serving as an example;
The practice of the Six Perfections and Four All-embracing Bodhisattva Virtues;
The practice of Tathagata by realizing dependent co-arising and emptiness in nature;
The practice of perfection by bringing blessings and wisdom home.

With these 12 practices, he wished participants to be able to live in mutual respect and understanding, enjoy harmony through embracing tolerance, and move forward to a bright and promising future by bringing blessings and wisdom home.

After the praying for blessings ritual, more than a dozen activities were arranged at the public square of National Dr. Sun Yet Sun Memorial Hall, for people to experience practicing Chan in daily life with a grateful mind, including Striking the Bell of Happiness, Sending Good Wishes through Sutra Copying, and Harnessing Happiness, as well as Merry Park of Chan Practice, a fun game designed for family.

Stop, Relax and Enjoy

Hundreds of young volunteers then gave the Downshifting with a Dancing Mind performance and blended in with participating mothers to “bring the mind closer,” lending the venue a youthful and vibrant atmosphere. Volunteers also used recycled materials to create portable boards as acting costumes, and invited people to have photos with them while doing the movements, experiencing ease and freedom of “Stop, Relax and Enjoy.” Afterwards, the chorus performed a flash mob act in that they surprised people by forming the acronym “SRE” with their bodies, rendering joy for the mothers who joined in celebrating these happy moments.

Protecting the spiritual environment

DDM expressed that the essence of “protecting the spiritual environment,” an ideal proposed by Master Sheng Yen in 1992, is in line with Chan, which requires us to use the methods of Chan practice to take good care of ourselves as well as others, and thus enhancing stability and purification in society. This is also the reason why DDM organizes activities and events on the Buddha’s Birthday and Mother’s Day, in the hope that everyone can enjoy a life of happiness by adopting “fun walking meditation” as a way of life, thereby bringing blessings and wisdom home, and helping create a pure land on earth, of peace, well-being, and happiness.

Zhang Tianpei (張田沛)

Lee Fan (李東陽), Shi Chuntai (施純泰), Lin Yaying (林雅櫻), Zhang Tianpei (張田沛)

Elenda Huang (頤嵐達)

Chang Chiacheng (張家誠)

Extended Readings

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