DDM Holds Protecting the Spiritual Environment Lecture: Heart-to-Heart Communication Starting from Family

Have you ever pondered the meaning of “family,” and the required qualities for the “master of the family”?

In an effort to continue Master Sheng Yan’s aspiration—extending loving care to society with the wisdom of the Dharma—Dharma Drum Mountain launched a Protecting the Spiritual Environment lecture at the National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall on September 8 and 9.The event combined seminars and the form of TED Talks, bringing the audience closer to each other.

In the “Building a Family by Bringing Blessings and Wisdom Home” seminar on the evening of September 8, speakers from different fields of expertise and across generations, including Ven. Guo Dong, DDM’s abbot president, Prof. Yang Pei, a senior counseling psychologist, Alan Ko, a famous popular singer, and Chen Xin, a drama artist, shared their life experiences in being a “master of the family,” and how they practice bringing blessing and wisdom home.

Ko and Chen shared their feelings about their fathers. First, Alan said of his inner transformation particularly after his father had passed away, when he suddenly realized how impermanent life is. Guided by the Dharma, he often reminds himself to practice “Face it, Accept it, Deal with it, Let it go” and cultivate great compassion, as a way to deal with difficulties in life. He also urges himself to constantly seek self-improvement in spirituality with a mind of repentance.

Later, Chen revealed that she had always tried to resist and escape from her father’s strictness, and it is only after she left home that she had come to appreciate the loving care behind the words of her father. By changing her thoughts she started to understand her father and herself in a fresh way. She also shared what her father had often told her: Do the right things, not just the easy things.

Ven. Guo Dong shared his feelings and thoughts about how he took on the responsibility of succeeding Master Sheng Yen as the second abbot president of Dharma Drum Mountain. He remembered the admonition and advice from the Master, which manifested his compassion and loving-kindness, and recalled the stories of their interactions in daily life that had inspired him greatly. By stressing the importance of changing one’s thoughts, he encouraged the audience to constantly let go and accept in gratitude all situations whether good or bad.

In making the conclusion, Prof. Yang expressed that she hadn’t been able to really appreciate the state of solitude until she reached the age of sixty. As she pointed out, solitude indicates the spirit of being independent and signifies a duty and responsibility. Learning to be responsible for one’s independent-self is becoming the master of one’s own life.

Fang Yuwen, a participant from Taoyaun, said that she had gained a better understanding of solitude thanks to Prof. Yang’s explanation, which had greatly moved her. On the other hand, Chen’s experience with her father, from confrontation to appreciation, had inspired her to show more gratitude to what she has received from her family. Yan Jialin, Fang’s mother, expressed that she hopes to practice changing thoughts more often so that she can better deal with people and things in life.

Text: Chang, Tian Pei (張田沛)
Photo: Wang, Chuang-Hon (王傳宏) Shih, Chun-Tai (施純泰)
Translation: Hsiao, Chen-an (蕭宸安)
Editor: Chang, ChiaCheng (張家誠)

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