Blessing Ceremony for Chinese Lantern Festival
Following the blissful ritual of sounding the Lotus Bell on the eve of Chinese Lunar New Year on 17 February 2007 Dharma Drum Mountain World Center for Buddhist Education hosted a number of special activities and blessing ceremonies to celebrate the Chinese Lantern Festival on 4 March 2007.
Led by several Venerable Fashis , ‘The Dharma Ceremony of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva for Peace’ was performed a total of seven times in the Grand Buddha Hall of DDM . . Many people participated in this harmonious event, joining together to send blessings for peace and harmony to their families, to grow in wisdom, and settle their minds and bodies for the fresh new year.
Venerable Master Sheng Yen, the founder of DDM, especially availed himself at the Grand Buddha Hall at 11:00am to preside over the ceremony. The Master said he hoped everyone could actively participate in the blessing ceremony. “I will also pray for blessings with you together and I wish everyone peace in 2007.”
Venerable Guo Dong, the Abbot President of DDM, was also in attendance to officiate the solemn Consecration Ceremony and the last session of the Dharma Ceremony of Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva for Peace.
The Abbot President said that DDM World Center for Buddhist Education has become a paramount place in northern Taiwan for people to seek Dharma joy, to grow in Dharma wisdom, to calm the mind and search for inner peace.
“DDM warmly welcomes everyone to come here to enjoy the Dharma joy and pacify the mind and body. Together, let’s strive to achieve the goal of ‘uplifting the character of humanity, and building a pure land on earth’,” the Abbot President said.
In addition to participating in the Dharma ceremonies held in the Grand Buddha Hall, guests also enjoy ed the tasty glutinous rice balls, traditionally eaten on the day of Chinese Lantern Festival , served by volunteers throughout the day.
At 8:00pm , following the conclusion of the Dharma Ceremonies, participants led by the Venerables headed for the Lotus Bell Tower . With w hite lanterns in their hand s , the dharma assembly chanted loudly the holy name of ‘Namo Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva (Namo Guan Shiyin Pu Sa)’ with the purpose of praying for peace and harmony.
The program ended successfully at 10:00pm w ith the participants led by Venerable Fashis peacefully chanting and circl ing the Lotus Bell once with joined palms .
(Reported and photos taken by Jin Yang/edited by Vicky Chan)