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Tuesday, August 04, 2015
In this lecture, Dr. Jessica Main addressed the state of contemporary Buddhism in Japan and compared her views with other scholars who have written books on this subject.

Presently, three sects of Buddhism exist in Japan – Zen, Pureland and Lotus School of Buddhism.
These sects are structured with a few head temples, each having a network branching in smaller temples. The temples in the lower hierarchy pay up to the head temples which in turn, organize resources for their temples downstream. In recent years, this network has atrophied and Buddhism is currently in a state of crisis in Japan.


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In this lecture, Dr. Jessica Main addressed the state of contemporary Buddhism in Japan and compared her views with other scholars who have written books on this subject.

Presently, three sects of Buddhism exist in Japan – Zen, Pureland and Lotus School of Buddhism.
These sects are structured with a few head temples, each having a network branching in smaller temples. The temples in the lower hierarchy pay up to the head temples which in turn, organize resources for their temples downstream. In recent years, this network has atrophied and Buddhism is currently in a state of crisis in Japan.
We all know that in dreams people confuse dream phenomena with reality by engaging in those scenarios. They don’t realize that it is only a dream until they wake up. What most people don’t know is that our daytime activities are also a dream, in which our minds are constantly engaged in images from our memories and regarding those as real. How can this all be a dream?
The DDM Social Welfare & Charity Foundation (DDMSWCF) and several Taiwan-based charities went deep into earthquake-stricken Nepalese mountainous areas again from June 11 to 14. In addition to showing care and concern, they also donated clothes and stationery that schoolchildren would need at the beginning of the new semester. On behalf of all students, the abbot of the local Tibetan Buddhist monastery, a Palyul branch monastery in Nubri, presented khatas, a traditional ceremonial scarf in Tibetan Buddhism, to volunteers as a token of their appreciation and blessing in return.
In the wake of the devastating earthquake and incessant aftershocks that have hit Nepal, an ancient Buddhist land, in April, the country’s remote areas, so far still isolated due to broken roads, are now in urgent need of humanitarian relief aid. While responding to their tragedy by expressing the care and concern from people in Taiwan, as well as providing immediate aid through donations and other resources, DDM is also concerned for the affected people’s needs in remote stricken towns and villages. Meanwhile, in response to a letter from Mahavaipulya Buddhist Association in Taiwan (臺灣大方廣佛學講修學會, MBAT), DDM promised to offer financial support to reconstruct “Ngagyur Memorial School,” located in a suburban area of Kathmandu, for the orphans from Nubri, a mountainous area in Nepal.
On April 19 2015, Dharma Drum for Young People in Malaysia (DDYP) held an advanced outdoor Chan meditation in Bukit Jalil Park, attracting 21 participants to go on the journey of the formula-of-mind.

The study of formula has always been the core of mathematics. Would the formula of mind be the ultimate core of humanity? The formula of mind is in fact the practice to remain at ease at any time and place, and to be able to find innate happiness. What then is innate happiness? Most people define happiness as a stage whereby everything works out well and smooth or that they have their wishes granted. But with ever-changing karmic causality, such happiness that we refer to is subject to change at any moment- it is a temporary and impermanent experience.
Dharma Drum Mountain founder Master Sheng Yen once said, “Chan practice helps one know oneself, affirm oneself, and transcend oneself. By using the methods of Chan practice at any time and place, one becomes more aware of one’s thoughts, as well as one’s own strengths and weaknesses. This is ‘knowing ourselves.’ And through knowing ourselves, we are able to master our own mind, and come to affirm and transcend ourselves.” Meanwhile, stressing focusing our attention on each and every present moment, Chan practice empowers our mind to remain unmovable like a still lake and reflect like a bright mirror, clearly aware of what is happening around us while unaffected by external situations. But, how can busy urban people really stop or slow down for a while to experience the wonderful benefit of Chan practice, living such a fast-paced life?
On May 16 and 17, Dharma Drum Mountain Malaysia Center held a two-day “Spiritual Health” Chan retreat at Chin Swee Caves Temple in Genting Highlands, allowing 89 retreatants to experience calm and relaxation of mind in a serene surrounding far away from bustling and hustling city.
Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Center Malaysia (DDMBCM) organized a Buddha bathing ceremony on 3 May 2015, drawing 300 devotees and more to participate in for cultivating and sharing the merits and virtue.
Usually, the Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Center Malaysia organizes One-Day Buddha-mindfulness Retreat activity on every Labor Day (May 1st) in the hopes that more devotees may take part in on the holiday, and this year is no exception.
Dharma Drum Vancouver Center (DDVC) held a refuge taking and Buddha bathing ceremony on the morning of 23 May 2015 (North America time zone). The Abbot President Ven. Guo Dong was present to express concerns and blessings, and to bath the Buddha statue as well as one’s innate Buddha-nature with over 220 followers on the joyful Buddha’s Birthday.
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